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SKIN CANCER - June 2017

Posted Sat 3 June 2017

I am meeting my friend (we’ll call her Chantal) for coffee. She’s funny, feisty and juggles a house full of kids with her work, dog and partner’s business trips. She waves to me as I enter the café and I sit down opposite. I can’t help noticing the bandage at the base of her neck. ‘Are you OK?’ I ask. ‘You’ve noticed!’ she laughs. ‘The strangest thing happened.’

She leans in, her blond hair brushing the table as she licks cappuccino froth from her teaspoon.

‘I went to a party the other week. As I was reaching for a drink (Prosecco with a dash of Chambord – delicious!) a guy looks at my neck and says, ‘GET. THAT. SEEN TO.’ He then said he wasn’t a doctor or anything but he’d seen a mole like mine before and that it was a nasty one. I was so surprised that I went to the GP the following day. Turns out the guy was right. The GP took one look and referred me to a dermatologist. I then had to go to a plastic surgeon because of where it was, and this is the result. I’ve had some further tests and it seems it was caught in time. So the guy was kind of my guardian angel.’

What Chantal said hit home. With an awesome ‘To Do’ list that never ends, getting a mole seen to is somewhere below ‘wash PE kit’ and ‘children’s taxi service’ – it just never makes it to the top. And a mole doesn’t exactly shout – it’s so easy to ignore. I know the facts: if a mole/freckle/lump/bump changes, grows, bleeds, itches or generally misbehaves, I should get it checked. It could be a nasty one.

So take it from me, I’ll give it to you straight: if you’re remotely concerned about a mole or similar skin thing, pop along to your GP or to Naked Health and get it seen. Cast an eye over your partner and kids while you’re at it, and get your partner to check you too!

Patience Wellbeing, Plastic Surgery Blogger