Everyone who goes out into the sun should use sunscreen. Why I say this is because melanoma is on the rise. While melanoma might seem harmless, it can be deadly if not treated early.
“Did you know that UV radiation can still damage skin even in the winter and on cloudy days?”
I know this as my husband had his first melanoma in August 2007. Mark had a mole but seemed to be growing. The doctor thought it was not melanoma but should come off just in case. Mark did not get the mole taken off until November 2007. Sadly, by then it had grown and spread into his lymph nodes.
In 2014 Mark had his second melanoma. He did not hesitate to have it removed and was lucky that it had not spread. He saw a dermatologist every 6 months and had more then 25 moles removed. These were all squamous cell carcinoma.
Mark fell on the ice in December 2019 and hurt his left rib. He did not think anything about it until the lump and pain returned in March 2020. After many tests it was determined that Mark had metastatic melanoma. The melanoma has spread to both ribs, left hip, lungs, lymph nodes and liver. Chemotherapy and radiation do not work for melanoma. We had to understand that metastatic melanoma was a death sentence. We do not know how long he has but we know it is not far off. He is trying IV immunotherapy and we will see next week how it is working.
The Truth about melanoma
This is a terrible story and I want to get the word out to prevent our younger generations from getting melanoma. Other then wearing protective clothing and staying indoors, the best thing we can do is wear sunscreen. You should use sunscreen with an SPF between 30-50. Any less than 30 and it is like putting baby oil on.
Hard to believe but many women but baby oil on their body and go outside for a tan. People think it is okay because they do not get a sunburn. That is not the problem. Melanoma can start by sitting outside uncovered or worse with baby oil. Just a little bump that we tend to ignore.
Melanoma is the deadliest form of skin cancer. Melanoma rates are rising rapidly, especially in younger people. In fact, cases of melanoma have tripled in the last 30 years, at a time when cancer rates for other common cancers have declined.
The national statistics of melanoma
- An estimated 196,060 cases of melanoma will be diagnosed in the U.S. in 2020.
- Of those, 95,710 cases will be noninvasive and confined to the top layer of skin.
- An estimated 100,350 cases will be invasive, penetrating into the skin’s second layer.
- An estimated 6,850 people (4,610 men and 2,240 women) will die of melanoma in the U.S. in 2020.
- About 1 in 50 Americans will be diagnosed with melanoma in their lifetime.
Information from https://www.skincancer.org/skin-cancer-information/melanoma
Prevention of Melanoma
5 ways to help prevent melanoma
1. Check your skin for unusual moles.
2. Use Sunscreen at all time when outside.
3. Do not use Tanning beds.
4. Cover up and seek shade when available.
5. Check under your fingernails and toenails.
If you see any signs of melanoma or a mole that does not look regular, you need to make an appointment with your primary doctor.
ABCDE’s of Melanoma
How will you know if something seems irregular? Looking for moles should include knowing the ABCDE’s of cancer. The picture shows the difference of benign or malignant moles.
I could literally blog for hours on melanoma, but pretty sure we would all get bored. I have created The Melanoma facts sheet by state, gender, complexion, and age showing your chances of getting melanoma. With my fact sheet I will be giving away Marks favorite sunscreen to the first 10 people. Head on over to my WORK WITH page and sign up for your chance at free sunscreen and to find out your chances of melanoma.
Until then, have an awesome and blessed day!