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She Didn’t Act on the Signs: Would You?

Skin Cancer, PAIn recent years, many celebrities have used their expansive platform for good. A few years ago, actor Hugh Jackman opened up about his multiple bouts with skin cancer. Now, it is the former Miss Universe Dayanara Torres who is speaking up in hopes of raising awareness.

In a recent interview, Ms. Torres revealed that a growth on the back of her knee, a rather large one that she’s been ignoring, was diagnosed as melanoma skin cancer. Torres admitted to simply not paying attention to what she described as a “big spot” with an uneven surface. She recognized the warning sign of the spot being new, meaning she wasn’t born with it. And she accredited her fiancé with potentially saving her life because it was he who made the doctor’s appointment to have the growth examined.

Since her diagnosis, Torres has had at least one procedure. The growth has been removed. Two lymph nodes in her upper leg were also removed because cancer had spread to them. Further tests were ongoing to determine the extent of the initial spread. For Torres, this diagnosis was a self-proclaimed wake up call. In her interview, she admitted that she had no idea that skin cancer could spread to other parts of the body. This admission caught our attention. If she did not act on signs, how many others may also be unaware of the seriousness of suspicious growths?

Melanoma’s Unique Challenges

You may be well aware of the ABCs of skin cancer. You may even check your skin every now and then for signs like:

  • Asymmetry
  • Borer irregularity
  • Color variations in a mole or growth
  • Diameter that is larger than a pencil eraser
  • Evolution in the size, color, or texture of a mole

Melanoma may not show up exactly as we expect it would. For instance, this type of cancer may show up on the bottom of the foot or in between the toes or fingers. Melanoma may develop beneath a fingernail or toenail. It may look the same color as surrounding sun spots or moles, but take on a scaly texture. Melanoma (and other skin cancers) may itch. They may feel painful at times and may bleed. Because melanoma is not the least bit “normal” when it comes to noticeable indicators, it is vital that we continue to raise awareness of the signs that cellular activity has run amuck.

The board-certified team at Dermatology and Skin Surgery Center in Exton, Coatesville, and Kennett Square perform full-body skin cancer screenings, testing, and treatment for the various types of skin cancer. To learn more about your skin, schedule a screening at 610.594.6660.

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