Skin Cancer

About Skin Cancer

Skin cancer is the most common cancer. Overexposure to UV light causes 90% of skin cancers, either from the sun or solariums. Skin cancer happens when abnormal skin cells grow uncontrollably. Damaged skin cells cannot replicate correctly during repair, leading to mutated DNA and quick, malignant tumour growth. Early diagnosis and treatment are the best ways to survive skin cancer.

Some skin cancer statistics:

  • Skin cancers make up 80% of all new cancer diagnoses.
  • Two out of every three Australians will get skin cancer by age 70.
  • Melanoma is the most common cancer in people aged 15-44 years.
  • Excluding non-melanoma skin cancer, melanoma is the third most common cancer in both women and men.
  • One out of 17 Australians will be diagnosed with melanoma before age 85.

It is advisable to have an annual skin cancer screening test. People at higher risk should undergo more frequent testing. This will help combat the alarming incidence of skin cancer in the country.

Skin Cancer Check

Detecting skin cancers early is crucial for effective treatment and patient outcomes. A full-body skin check is a comprehensive assessment that plays a vital role in uncovering potential skin issues that may have gone unnoticed. We highly recommend this thorough examination for all our patients.

During the 15-20 minute skin check, our experienced doctors will inspect your skin from head to toe, using specialised equipment (dermatoscope) to identify any abnormal skin spots with unusual shapes or colors. To ensure a proper examination, we kindly ask you to undress to your underwear. To facilitate accurate assessments, we ask that you avoid wearing nail polish, makeup, or fake tan when you come in for your skin examination. These products can conceal spots and make them harder to detect, potentially delaying diagnosis and treatment.

If you have a full head of hair, the doctors will still examine your scalp, even though skin cancer of the scalp is rare. However, long hair might hinder a complete scalp examination. To enable a thorough inspection, we recommend having a haircut before your skin check.

Your health and well-being are our top priorities, and a full-body skin check is an invaluable tool in the early detection and management of potential skin cancers. We encourage you to schedule a skin check regularly to maintain your skin health.

Skin Cancer Types

Basal Cell Carcinoma (BCC)

It is the most common type of skin cancer by far, but also the least dangerous. It grows slowly and rarely spreads. Though BCC is seldom life-threatening, if left untreated it can grow deep beneath the skin and into the underlying tissue and bone, causing serious damage (particularly if it's located near the eye).

Squamous Cell Carcinoma (SCC)

It is the next most common kind of skin cancer, frequently appearing on the lips, face, or ears. It sometimes spreads to distant sites, including lymph nodes and internal organs. It can become life threatening if it's not treated. 

Malignant Melanoma

It is the least common, but the most dangerous type of skin cancer. If discovered early enough, it can be completely cured. If it's not treated quickly, however, malignant melanoma may spread throughout the body and is often deadly. 

Skin Cancer Treatment

Most skin cancers are removed through surgery. Although no surgery is without scars, your doctor will make every effort to treat your skin cancer without dramatically changing your appearance. Most procedures performed at our clinic include:

Cryotherapy

This involves spraying liquid nitrogen onto the skin. The aim is to freeze and destroy the tissue.

Curettage and electrodesiccation (diathermy)

This involves scraping away skin tissue with a curette (a sharp surgical instrument), followed by cauterising the wound with an electrosurgical diathermy to kill any remaining cancer cells.

Excision

Excision is made with a scalpel and the wound is usually stitched after.

Biopsy

A skin biopsy is a procedure in which a sample of skin tissue is removed, processed, and examined under a microscope. Sometimes, different skin conditions can look similar to the naked eye so additional information is required. This is obtained by looking at the structure of the skin under the microscope after the cells have been stained with special coloured dyes.

Announcement

WE HAVE MOVED !!!

We are delighted to announce our brand-new location at 280 Pitt St, Sydney, beginning on Monday, October 30, 2023. It’s conveniently just a 3-minute walk from the previous centre. We look forward to serving you at our new location.