I’m Debra and this is my story. Skin cancer doesn’t have to rob you of enjoying the outdoors. I’m living proof.
One of the things that I love the most put me at risk for developing one of the most deadly cancers: melanoma. For years I unknowingly jeopardized my health just by being outside and doing some of the things I loved the most.
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, one in five Americans will develop some form of skin cancer in their lifetime. Experts know that sun exposure is the leading cause of skin cancer, but doctors can’t always say why one person develops skin cancer and another doesn’t.
Taking the chance of exposing yourself to unprotected or extended sun exposure is a dangerous gamble. Your chances of developing skin cancer are directly correlated to your exposure to the sun. I don’t take this fact lightly because the American Cancer Society projects that 1.1 million new cases of skin cancer will be diagnosed with more than 8,000 fatalities. I am one of the lucky ones.
Some people are more at risk for developing skin cancer than others. People with light eyes and fair skin that burns easily have the greatest risk of developing skin cancer. Fortunately, most types of skin cancer can be detected early, and early detection is key to survival.
Greenville Health System Cancer Center's Oncology Multidisciplinary Center (MDC) now offers MoleMapCD, a new technology that helps patients at risk for melanoma and their doctors track changes in moles from head to toe—and to detect melanoma in its early and highly curable stages. If it hadn’t been for the doctors at the Cancer Center, my story might be different.
Learn more about GHS Cancer Center.