November hosted National Skin Cancer Action Week, and the Australasian College of Dermatologists (ACD) partnered with Cancer Council during that week, to remind Australians of the importance of sun protection and early skin cancer detection.
This year, the focus of the campaign was on teenagers and tanning with the message of ditch your tan this summer and #OwnYourTone.
Dr Andrew Miller, President of the ACD says:
“The message of slip, slop, slap, seek and slide is well known. However, young people often don’t think about the consequences of tanning and are more concerned with immediate beauty perceptions. UV damage is cumulative, so tanning in your 20s will show as early aging of your skin in your 30s and increase your chances of skin cancer in your 50s. You are better off embracing your natural skin tone and protecting your skin from the sun.”
The earlier that skin cancer is diagnosed and treated, the greater the chance of survival. It is important to be familiar with your skin and perform self-examinations of your whole body.
Dr David Francis, President-Elect of the ACD says:
“Early diagnosis is key to successful treatment. Dermatologists unfortunately see a huge number of patients with some form of skin cancer. Removing the primary melanoma at the origin will resolve 90 per cent of cases of the disease, which makes early detection and diagnosis absolutely critical.”
General Practitioners (GPs) remain at the front line of skin cancer detection for most Australians, however, people who are at high risk of skin cancer, or who have a suspicious mole or spot which may require more complex care, should be referred to a dermatologist by their GP or skin cancer doctor.
Dr Miller says:
“Dermatologists are specialists trained in the diagnosis and treatment of all skin diseases including skin cancer. People should discuss referral to a dermatologist with their GP if they have a suspicious mole or spot or are at high risk of skin cancer.”
Links to further information
For further information on the ACD, visit www.dermcoll.edu.au
About the Australasian College of Dermatologists (ACD):
The ACD is the peak medical college accredited by the Australian Medical Council for the training and professional development of medical practitioners in the specialty of dermatology. They provide authoritative information about dermatology to Government, the media, other health professionals and the general public.