About Skin Cancer:
There are three types of skin cancer: Basal Cell, Squamous Cell, and Melanoma.
If you are diagnosed with Melanoma, you should be evaluated by a Surgical Oncologist.
According to the National Cancer Institute there were 68,720 new cases of melanoma in the United States and 8,650 deaths in 2009.
Melanoma is a form of cancer that begins in the melanocytes (cells that make the pigment melanin and give our skin color), but can also begin in other pigmented tissues such as the eye. Melanoma can be invasive , depending on its’ stage, which means it can travel to lymph nodes and on to other solid organs.
Melanoma treatment is dependent on the stage of disease.
If you have an “in situ” stage Melanoma, the Melanoma cells have not yet become invasive a wide local excision of the lesion is the standard of care. If you have a “thin” melanoma (<=1mm and a mitotic rate of <1mm2 ) again a wide local excision is the standard of care. Both diagnoses should have continued follow up in the form of annual professional skin exams.
However, if you have a Melanoma Stage IA or greater you want to visit with a Surgical Oncologist
because an evaluation of your “nodal status” with a procedure called “sentinel lymph node biopsy
” is the standard of care. This is a common procedure done in our operating rooms.Detection:
Sun Burns as a child, Tanning Beds, Family Members Diagnosed with Skin Cancer…these things, and others, can put you at increased risk for developing a skin cancer.
If you have a skin lesion that is itching and not healing you would want to seek medical attention. This is a common presentation of most skin cancers.
Your primary care physician (PCP) can perform annual skin exams at the time of your annual physical. The PCP can also talk with you about your individual risk of developing a skin cancer.Prevention:
· Sun screens
- Recommend SPF 15 or greater: We recommend Neutrogena Sunscreen Product with Helioplex
- Apply sunscreen 30 minutes before going outside and re-apply every two hours
- Infants should be kept out of the sun.
- Sunscreens should be used on babies 6 months and older
· Look for shade (10a to 4p), cover up with clothing, and wear broad brimmed hats
· Examine your skin head to toe every month
By Mary Salazar, MSN, RN, APN 5/11/2010http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/types/melanomaBasic Cancer Prevention
Copied from ACS Web Page:
NEW YORK, MAY 4, 2010 – The American Cancer Society, the nation’s largest voluntary health organization, today will launch a new nationwide movement to shine the spotlight on a sobering statistic: one in three women will get cancer in her lifetime. Choose You (www.chooseyou.com) is designed to inspire women to take action and put their health first in order to stay well and help prevent cancer.The Choose You Commitment
As part of the Choose You movement, women are encouraged to sign a Choose You Commitment, an online pledge to reach a specific, individual health goal. At ChooseYou.com, women can choose from five different health categories: Eat Right; Get Active; Get Recommended Health Screenings; Protect Your Skin; and Quit Smoking. Participants give a minimum five dollar pledge once they sign a Choose You Commitment to incentivize them to stay on track. They can also ask friends and family to support them. Scientific research suggests that women who have a “stake in the game”, as well as social support from friends and family are more likely to be successful at accomplishing personal health goals. Choose You participants and visitors to ChooseYou.com will have access to online support and tools such as a calorie calculator, virtual dietitian, nutrition and activity quiz, smoking cost calculator, prevention and early detection videos, and a desktop helper with daily health tips. What is New in our Practice?
What’s New In the Community:
- Dr. Spencer Frink has joined our practice. He is an Orthopedic Oncologist specializing in Bone and Muscle Tumors.
- Dr. Morton Kahlenberg traveled to San Francisco to attend the National Surgical Adjuvant Breast and Bowel Project (NSABP). He participated in the colorectal cancer working group committee meeting.
- Dr. David Smith was an invited lecturer at the Royal College of Surgeons meeting in Australia the first week of May.
- In March Mary Salazar, our Nurse Practitioner, attended the 63rd Annual Cancer Symposium for the Society of Surgical Oncology in St. Louis, MO. This was a four day program which included presentations by national and international experts on controversies in the surgical management of patients with breast cancer, melanoma, colorectal liver metastases, and pancreatic cancers.
- Dr. Morton Kahlenberg continues to serve his as a board member for the San Antonio Chapter of the Koman Foundation.
- May 1st 28,529 registered participants attended the Race for the Cure sponsored by the Komen Foundation.
- Relay for Life is coming up in August. See: www.relayforlife.org