Melanoma Know More at St. Elizabeth Healthcare

What do you know about melanoma? St. Elizabeth Healthcare wants you to be a part of the Melanoma Know More movement.

Warning signs and symptoms of melanoma

Melanoma can be one of the deadliest forms of skin cancer. However, there is a bright side: when it’s detected early, it is highly treatable.

The American Academy of Dermatology (ADA) suggests using the ABCDE method to identify melanoma warning signs:

  • A: Asymmetry (one half is unlike the other)
  • B: Border (irregular, scalloped or poorly defined)
  • C: Color (varied from one area to another; shades of tan, brown and black; sometimes red, white or blue)
  • D: Diameter (usually about the size of a pencil eraser (6mm), but they can be smaller)
  • E: Evolving (a mole or skin lesion that is changing in size, shape or color; looks different from the rest)

It’s important to schedule yearly skin checks with a dermatologist. They are trained to identify pre-cancerous signs before the average person would realize something is wrong. Your dermatologist will also keep track of any potentially problematic areas.

[source: ADA Spot Me brochure – www.spotme.org]

Melanoma Know More

St. Elizabeth Healthcare is a supporter of the Melanoma Know More campaign, designed to raise awareness about melanoma and offer prevention tips. The program also offers free skin check clinics at a variety of local health organizations including St. Elizabeth.

Melanoma Know More is committed to helping the people of Greater Cincinnati learn more about this disease. With summer weather right around the corner, make sure to incorporate the following tips into your routine to minimize sun exposure:

  • Seek shade between 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  • Wear protective, breathable clothing.
  • Wear a hat and sunglasses whenever possible.
  • Apply sunscreen 15-20 minutes before sun exposure. Reapply every two hours and after swimming, towel drying or sweating.
  • Use sunscreen liberally, even on cloudy days.
  • Use a broad-spectrum, water-resistant sunscreen of SPF 30 or more to all exposed skin.
  • Avoid tanning beds – base tans do not help prevent sunburn.
  • Keep babies out of the sun and only use sunscreen when they are six months old or older.
  • Use sunscreens specifically formulated for children and infants.

[source: ADA Spot Me brochure – www.spotme.org]

St. Elizabeth Healthcare: advocating healthy skin

Cathy Reising has been with St. Elizabeth Healthcare for 30 years. As the manager for Cancer Quality, Community and Accreditations at the hospital, Cathy is an advocate of prevention. She recommends the No Tanning Promise and suggests checking your birthday suit each year near your birthday.

“Have fun outdoors but remember – anyone can get skin cancer regardless of age or skin color,” she says. “You only get one body suit in a lifetime – take care of it like any other part of your body!”

For more information or to register for the next Melanoma Know More free skin care screening, call (859) 301-SCRN (7276). You can also view upcoming screenings on the St. Elizabeth events calendar.