Living in New Zealand involves facing everything our climate has to offer, and resilient as it is, your skin needs care and attention to stay healthy, especially as you age.
Many of us grew up in a world of sunbathing with body oils and a lack of sunscreen. Our parents didn’t know to slather us in sunscreen every time we left the house. Recently (2020) New Zealand took over Australia in having the highest melanoma rate in the world.
It’s too late to turn back the clock and undo sunburn damage, but going forward we can protect ourselves. Early detection is the best defence against skin cancer. Over the last 15 years, Chris, Andrew and Michael have detected and managed over 1000 cases of melanoma (99% of these have achieved a full cure). If found and caught early enough melanoma is a totally curable cancer! Early detection is essential.
At the SkinCheck Clinic, we help you monitor and care for your skin. If we find a skin cancer, it is highly likely our treatment will mean a complete cure.
We utilise the the latest technology for photography / tracking and full body mapping (when needed) in order to provide the most reassuring and comprehensive service.
The standard consultation cost for a Full Body Skin Check:
By Doctor - $200
By Nurse Specialist: $150 (Usually not covered by health insurance)
Brief consults for specific lesions of concern are:
By Doctor: $95.
By Nurse Specialist: $75
Liquid nitrogen, if required is an additional $20 - $80 depending on the number of lesions needing treatment.
If appropriate, our doctors may recommend full body photography with digital AI lesion mapping prior to future full skin checks.
The cost for this is $190.
How high is your risk of developing a skin cancer?
If you answer yes to one or more of the following you should consider having a skin check:
Does your job expose you to high levels of ultraviolet radiation (UVA and UVB)?
Do your hobbies and sports expose you to high levels of ultraviolet radiation (UVA and UVB)? Common hobbies such as sailing, gardening, cycling, golf etc.
Do you have a history of sunburn?
Have you used a sunbed or solarium?
Do you have a large number of moles?
Have you noticed any of your “moles” changing?
Do you have a personal or family history of melanoma or non-melanoma skin cancer?
Do you burn easily?
Are you over 50?
The more yes' unfortunately also means a higher potential risk of developing a skin cancer in your lifetime.
An annual full skin check will provide you with a baseline and assuming there are no lesions of concern you can then self-inspect your skin once a month.
Using this protocol to monitor for changes will help ensure you detect possible problems early. If between annual skin checks you find something new or changing, then pop into the clinic and we will assess the situation (often at no charge). More often than not we will be able to provide you with reassurance.
Over 4000 people are diagnosed with either melanoma in situ or invasive melanoma every year in New Zealand – that’s around 11 every day
It’s the fourth most common cancer in New Zealand and accounts for nearly 80% of all skin cancer deaths
Around 300 New Zealanders die of melanoma every year
New Zealand and Australia have the highest melanoma incidence rate in the world
70% of melanoma cases occur in people aged 50 years and older
Melanoma rarely occurs in children
Although Maori and Pacific people have a lower chance of getting melanoma, they often have thicker, more serious melanomas
Death rates are higher among men and appear to be increasing
Statistics from Melanoma.org.nz
You can protect your skin against harmful UV radiation:
Wear broad-brimmed hats
Wear clothing covering the arms, legs and body
Choose appropriate sunglasses (close-fitting, wrap-around glasses that meet the Australian/New Zealand Standard AS/NZS1067)
Use sunscreens, in conjunction with but not as a replacement for physical methods
UV radiation is highest between 11 am and 4 pm during daylight saving months. Although it’s not possible to turn back the clock and undo sunburn damage, going forward we can protect ourselves.
Early detection is the best defence against skin cancer.