Cancer

Free Skin Cancer Screenings Available May 7

Spectrum Health annual event happening throughout West Michigan

Dermoscopy is a technique that is used worldwide to improve the accuracy of melanoma diagnosis. It is used extensively for mole screening and skin cancer diagnosis.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich., April 24, 2019 –It’s always nice to get something for “free.”

Spectrum Health is offering a “freebie” soon that could actually save lives.

On Tuesday, May 7, from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m., Spectrum Health will offer free skin cancer screenings throughout the community on a walk-in basis (no appointment necessary). Dermatologists will perform SPOTme® skin cancer screenings at each of the following locations:

Spectrum Health Medical Group
426 Michigan Street NE
Grand Rapids, MI 49503

Spectrum Health Medical Group
2111 12 Mile Road NW
Sparta, MI 49345

Spectrum Health Medical Group
588 E. Lakewood Boulevard
Holland, MI 49424

Spectrum Health South Pavilion
80 68th Street SE Suite 201
Cutlerville, MI 49548

Spectrum Health United Hospital
615 S. Bower Street Cancer Center
Greenville, MI 48838

Spectrum Health Integrated Care Campus – North Muskegon
2009 Holton Road
Muskegon, MI 49445

“Skin cancer is a serious problem in West Michigan and we strongly encourage people to take advantage of these free screenings,” said G. Paul Wright, MD, chief of cutaneous oncology and surgical oncologist, Spectrum Health.

“As with all cancers, the sooner it is identified and treated, the better. The best way to find skin cancer in its earliest and most treatable stage is by self-checking regularly and having a dermatologist perform a focused skin cancer screening, which is what we are making available on May 7.”

According to Dr. Wright, during last year’s event, out of the 401 patients screened, 127 people or 32 percent were recommended to follow up with their physicians. Out of those individuals, 45 were diagnosed with basal or squamous cell skin cancer and six people with melanoma.

“Taking advantage of the free screenings made a huge difference in the lives of those patients,” said Dr. Wright.

Here are the facts about skin cancer from the American Academy of Dermatology, the American Cancer Society and Sun Safety Alliance:

  • 1 in 5 Americans will be diagnosed with skin cancer in their lifetime
  • More than 3 million cases are diagnosed each year
  • Melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, kills one person every hour
  • Skin cancer is the most common cancer in the United States
  • Spending 4+ hours in the sun’s rays increases your risk
  • Exposed areas are at higher risk: head, arms, legs, feet, top of chest and ears

The risk is even greater for children, who tend to be out in the sun more often than adults. Even one blistering sunburn can double a child’s lifetime risk of developing skin cancer.

If you have been diagnosed with cancer and would like a consultation or second opinion, call Spectrum Health Cancer Center at 1.855.SHCANCER (855.742.2623).

 

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Spectrum Health, a not-for-profit, integrated health system, is committed to improving the health and wellness of our communities. We live our mission every day with 31,000 compassionate professionals, 4,300 medical staff experts, 3,300 committed volunteers and a health plan serving 1 million members. Our talented physicians and caregivers are privileged to offer a full continuum of care and wellness services to our communities through 14 hospitals, including Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital, 155 ambulatory sites and telehealth offerings. We pursue health care solutions for today and tomorrow that diversify our offerings. Locally-governed and based in Grand Rapids, Michigan, our health system provided $585 million in community benefit in fiscal year 2019. Thanks to the generosity of our communities, we received $30 million in philanthropy in the most recent fiscal year to support research, academics, innovation and clinical care. Spectrum Health has been recognized as one of the nation’s 15 Top Health Systems by Truven Health Analytics®, part of IBM Watson HealthTM.

Contact:
Susan Krieger
Media Relations
Office: 616.391.5541
Mobile: 616.307.7880
Email: susan.krieger@spectrumhealth.org