2 in 3 Australians are diagnosed with some form of skin cancer by the age of 70
Australia has the highest rates of melanoma in the world. Melanoma is the third most common cancer in Australia, with a death every five hours due to melanoma.
Another group of skin cancers are Carcinomas (Basel Cell Carcinoma and Squamous Cell Carcinoma). They are more commonly detected than Melanomas and can also be life threatening.
Dr. Michael Hanson leads the Skin Check Clinic. This clinic is in addition to skin check consultations provided by all general practitioners upon request.
Dr Hanson has considerable experience in skin cancer screening and management. He worked as a doctor in Queensland (which has the highest rates of skin cancer in Australia) and was mentored by a clinician from the Melanoma Institute.
There are many risk factors that increase the chances of melanoma, including:
- fair skin
- high mole count
- family history
- pattern of sunburns throughout life, especially during childhood.
Try to become familiar with the look of your skin, so you can pick up any changes that might suggest a skin cancer. Look for:
- any crusty, non-healing sores
- small lumps that are red, pale or pearly in colour
- new spots, freckles or any moles changing in colour, thickness or shape over a period of weeks to months.
If you notice a strange new mole on your skin or an old mole that’s started changing, it’s important to see your GP right away. Some people at higher risk require regular, planned skin assessments.