Skin cancer doesn’t hibernate
It’s a scary fact that New Zealand has the highest melanoma death rate in the world. That’s why it’s so important to get moles checked out, even if they look “normal”. Contrary to popular belief, skin cancer is not a “summer thing” and it’s important to remember that skin cancer has no respect for age or season and melanomas are regularly detected in the winter months.
Dr Andre Oertel from the Skin Cancer Clinic in Remuera says: “Skin Cancer doesn’t hibernate in winter. Although many skin cancers are treatable many are not. Melanoma in particular is not always instantly recognisable and it can develop very quickly - weeks to months. Melanoma is aggressive and can be fatal.”
The Skin Cancer Clinic is set in a relaxed clinic environment known as Health Link Clinic and offers the latest mole mapping technology. When used, it gives an up close and magnified view of the client’s mole, age spot etc and helps give an accurate diagnosis. If a suspect spot is detected it can be immediately removed and sent for a biopsy.
If you find you have a mole that has changed or a sore that has not healed and think “I’ll get it checked out sometime”, don’t delay and put it at the bottom of your to-do list, get it checked out ASAP! Dr Oertel strongly recommends that mole checks and mole mapping be a standard part of everyone’s health programme including children.
“An annual check is usually sufficient, however, where there is a history of skin cancer either personally or in the wider family, then perhaps a six-monthly check would be wise. Of course if anybody has doubts about a spot then it should be checked imme- diately.”
So don’t be fooled by Jack Frost, Skin Cancer can occur anytime in any season. Take preventative measures by wearing sunscreen year round and get moles checked out by Dr Oertel and the team at the Skin Cancer Clinic, Health Link Clinic.
They are located at 99 Remuera Road, Remuera Corner of Remuera and St Marks Road. Free parking on site, phone for an appointment on 522-7292.
Be safe: Kim Baker, Dr Andre Oertel & Tennessee O’Donald showcase the latest technological machine to help combat skin cancer