Under their skin
KYLIE Moore is the picture of contentment as she enjoys playtime with her bubbly young son Dylan.
But a scar on her neck tells the tale of her brush with one of Australia’s most common forms of cancer – melanoma.
Ms Moore has been careful of the sun since her school days.
Given her vigilance, the Wangaratta mother of two initially thought nothing of a mole on her neck – until it continually became dislodged when playing with Dylan, and kept bleeding profusely.
Eventually, tired of the bleeding and worried about the mole, the 31 year old asked her doctor to remove it in October last year.
Two days later she was called in urgently to her doctor and told she had a stage two melanoma, which had grown 4mm deep.
She said her scare has renewed her drive to be sunsmart, wearing long sleeve shirts and leggings in the sun, and keeping a close eye on her family’s skin to ensure any abnormalities are detected early.
It has even changed her approach to family outings, with warm weather trips to the park tending to take place in the late afternoon.
“Chances are high that they (melanomas) can pop up at any time,” she said. “I’m paranoid now. “Everybody should get checked out.
“I recommend everyone get a yearly check-up.”
It’s advice supported by Bright resident Paul Vey.
A native Canadian, he is relishing the Australian outdoor lifestyle, but was taken aback when a melanoma on his back was picked up during a regular check-up.
“It was quite upsetting… these are things that happen to other people,” he said.
After it was removed and confirmed as melanoma, he had to return to his doctor and have a bigger section in his back removed to ensure it did not spread.
“I found it very painful,” the 49 year old keen hiker and cyclist said.
Mr Vey, who is always careful to wear long shirts, sunscreen and a hat, urged members of the public to be watchful for signs of melanoma and “slip, slop slap”.
Melanoma is the most common cancer in young Australians, affecting more people aged 15-39 years than any other cancer, and is the third most common form of cancer in Australian men and women.
Early detection and treatment of melanoma could save your life – as more than 90 per cent of melanoma can be cured, if detected and treated early enough. Look for: mole; To reduce your chance of getting melanoma:
part of the day, and remember, sun can reflect off surfaces such as water, sand and concrete;
least, your back, shoulders, arms and legs; spectrum sunscreen at least every two hours; and Melanoma Institute Australia is currently fundraising for continued research, and a Melanoma March will be held in Melbourne from the Kings Domain Gardens on March 23 – go to www.melanoma.org.au.
FAMILY TIME: Wangaratta’s Kylie Moore, who had a melanoma removed from her neck, enjoys playtime with her son Dylan.
SUDDEN DIAGNOSIS: Bright resident Paul Vey was surprised when it was discovered he had a melanoma.