Showing posts from September, 2016

"Doctor does this mole matter?"

What would you say is the most common cancer in the UK?  It is not lung cancer, breast cancer or bowel cancer. Nor is it prostate, ovarian or cancer of the cervix. The answer believe it or not, is skin cancer, with 100,000 new cases diagnosed in the UK each year. That’s 274 a day. The good news is that it is both treatable, and in many cases preventable. An individual’s risk is determined by a mixture of factors including not just sun exposure, but genetics, the number of moles you have and how fair skinned you are. Doctors grade skin types by what is known as the Fitzpatrick scale, from the fair skinned ‘Type 1’ (always burns, never tans, pale white; blond or red hair; blue eyes; freckles) to the dark skinned ‘Type 6’ (Never burns, never tans, deeply pigmented dark brown to darkest brown skin). Generally your risk is higher the lower your ‘type’. We have known for years that ultraviolet exposure (UV) from the sun is the primary cause, with sunburn being a particular trigger for changes…