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 is a not-for-profit health system that provides care and coverage, comprising 31,000+ team members, 14 hospitals (including Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital), a robust network of care facilities, teams of nationally recognized doctors and providers, and the nation’s third-largest provider-sponsored health plan, Priority Health, currently serving over 1 million members across the state of Michigan. People are at the heart of everything we do. Locally governed and headquartered in Grand Rapids, Michigan, we are focused on our mission: to improve health, inspire hope and save lives. Spectrum Health has a legacy of strong community partnerships, philanthropy and transparency. Through experience, innovation and collaboration, we are reimagining a better, more equitable model of health and wellness.

Contact:
Sarina Gleason
Media Relations
Phone: 517.256.5618
Email: sarina.gleason@spectrumhealth.org