Whole body dermoscopy increases sensitivity and specificity of melanoma diagnosis. Fewer harmless lesions are unnecessarily removed and early melanomas that would otherwise have been missed by simple visual inspection are identified.
We all enjoy sunshine and sunlight is our main source of vitamin D, which is vital for good health.
However, excessive exposure to sunlight over the years can damage the skin. This can result in prematurely aged or wrinkled skin and, of course, a variety of skin cancers.
Full body mole checks are not generally available on the NHS, although your GP will always look at any mole that concerns you.
South West Dermatology offer a full body mole check service undertaken by Dr Anthony Downs, Consultant in Dermatology Medicine and Surgery. Dr Downs will make a full assessment of your moles using a dermatoscope.
If any cancerous or pre-cancerous moles are detected you will be given full information to take to your GP who can arrange treatment on the NHS or, alternatively, you may choose to have treatment at South West Dermatology on a private basis.
If a mole is not suspicious but you would like to have it removed anywaythis can be arranged for you, and a full quotation for the surgery and appointment can be made at the time of the mole check. The removal of benign moles for cosmetic reasons is not currently funded on the NHS.
The average adult has around 30 benign moles on their skin, but any mole that itches, hurts, changes in colour, size, or shape, or bleeds should always be checked by a doctor as these symptoms can indicate the development of a malignant melanoma.
Each year, 2 to 3 million non-melanoma cancer patients, and 132,000 melanoma patients, are diagnosed globally. When prevention fails, catching skin cancer early is crucial and highly treatable.
A group of young creatives in Vienna realized by their own experiences with skin cancer, that there’s not much knowledge about these type of cancers and so they decided to raise awareness of melanoma and other skin cancers, and encourage self-exams for early detection by starting an online campaign called “Spot the Dot”. Visit www.spotthedot.org for more info.
If you have experienced a lot of sun exposure in the past, especially sunburn, and have one or more moles on your body that you would like to have looked at, a full body mole check may be worth considering.
A cancerous or pre-cancerous mole could possibly be detected even before you notice it yourself and a treatment plan put in place.
* If Dr. Downs assesses a mole that looks suspicious, a full suspicious mole/skin lesion consultation including a treatment plan and any onward referral may be required (costing £200). Prices correct as of 31st May 2023.
Dr Downs is happy to receive a photograph using the form below if you would like an initial opinion on an individual mole.
The full body mole check clinic including any pre-consultation photographic triage, is led by Dr Anthony Downs acting in a private capacity as an agent of South West Clinical Dermatology Ltd. Full liability for the opinions expressed & treatments received rests with South West Clinical Dermatology Ltd, or with other Consultants offering private services within the context of the mole check clinic, and not with Exeter Medical Ltd.