Checks find 20 with cancer
ABOUT 20 cases of skin cancer were picked up when specialists held clinics in Ashford and other towns in east Kent.
The session in Ashford took place at Marks & Spencer last Thursday.
Anyone worried about moles or marks or who wanted reassurance or advice about skin cancer could have the free check.
The sessions were carried out by members of a team based at Kent and Canterbury Hospital, who also hold clinics at the William Harvey hospital in Ashford.
Consultant dermatologist Dr Susannah Baron said: “We picked up quite a few skin can- cer cases and have asked those people to see their GP for a referral for further investigation.
“Men are a really worrying group who we need to particularly target but we also need to change people’s perception and attitudes to the sun and tanning.”
Dr Baron said everyone now needed to be aware of the harmful effects of sun exposure and to take precautions accordingly, such as covering up, avoiding the sun from 11am to 3pm and wearing sun cream.
Across east Kent, about 200 people had skin cancer checks and about 20 cases were found.
Dr Ashley Cooper said that three or four of those were of the particularly dangerous kind.
He said: “Kent is a peak geographical area for skin cancer. It has been very useful holding these clinics and we hope to do the same again next year.”
Dr Cooper said people had to get used to the idea that a tan from the sun was a bad thing to have.
“Fake tans are a good idea as long as people remember that they offer no protection from the sun,” he said.
He said that most skin cancer cases picked up in east Kent are home grown, affecting people who have seldom or never been abroad.
Consultant dermatologist Kurt Ayerst checks a patient for signs of skin cancer at Marks & Spencer, Ashford