Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Sunblock On Your Feet?

It is time for summer and you are slathering on the sunblock. Don't forget to put sunblock on your feet. That sounds funny, but melanoma can be found on the skin on your feet. Unfortunately, the survival rates of foot melanoma is low because it can often go undetected. What you should you be on the look out for?

The common characteristics of melanoma are as simple as A B C D 
Asymmetry meaning the shape of the lesions is not symmetrical, for example if you folded the lesion in half the halves would not line up.  Borders or the outline of the lesions is not smooth or circular but scalloped or ragged. The malignant lesion maybe several Colors or variegated.  Benign lesions tend to have just one color throughout the entire lesion. The last common characteristic of melanomas is the Diameter or size of the lesion. A diameter of about 6mm or greater, the size of a pencil eraser, has a greater chance of becoming malignant.

The most common age to develop a melanoma is in your 50's. Foot melanoma can affect men and women equally. Fair skinned with blue eyes have a higher chance of developing melanoma over other skin and eye types.  The most common areas of your feet to develop melanoma is on the soles of  your feet, between toes or under toenails.

If you notice a mole, bump, or patch on the skin  it is important to get it checked out right away.
With 40,000 new cases discovered every year,  regular inspections of your feet can catch this deadly cancer early. As a preventative measure, apply sunscreen to your feet not just the tops, but also between the toes and on the bottom of your feet as well.
Here's to a happy and healthy sunmmer

Dr. Alexandra "Sandie" Grulke

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