Being concerned about a growth on your skin can be worrying, even if it is benign. Here at University Park Dermatology we appreciate the amount of stress this can cause and are happy to work with our patients to rule out any potentially malignant growths to help put their minds at ease.
If you are looking to have a mole, growth or patch of skin investigated, we would recommend that you visit with us sooner rather than later, as most forms of skin cancer can be successfully treated if they are found early.
We understand that you may be nervous about this, which is why our team is fully trained to treat each and every patient graciously and to keep you fully informed throughout the testing procedure. Should you receive a cancer diagnosis, we will help you to find the right treatment and specialist for your situation.
Here is our advice on what to look for when finding the right melanoma/skin cancer specialist.
- You should feel confident in the ability of your skin cancer specialist
As with any kind of medical treatment, you should be able to trust your skin cancer specialist implicitly. Their bedside manner should be polite yet transparent and they should remain professional at all times. Scary growths or messy looking moles can be very worrying, but being given all the information about your diagnosis and potential treatment can help you feel much more in control of the situation.
Always find a medical professional who specializes in this area. Whether this is a dermatologist, an oncologist or a family physician, they will need to be experienced in the identification and treatment of skin cancer in order to offer you the very best outcome.
- You should feel confident about your diagnosis and prognosis
Although you may be worried, it is important that the pathological characteristics of any melanoma are correct. You may wish to ask for a second opinion if your feel the physician has been lax in their diagnosis or treatment of you. It is vital that the diagnosis is correct to ensure that you do not risk receiving inappropriate or inadequate treatment.
- Experience speaks volumes
A physician who deals with melanomas on a regular basis will be far better informed about potential treatments and outcomes than a more general physician will be. Whilst this may be an upsetting time for you, remember to ask your physician if they have dealt with many other melanoma cases and if so, is this is regular occurrence for them.
- Look for a comprehensive treatment service
A physician who specializes in melanoma will be able to link up with a qualified network of surgeons, pathologists, oncologists, and mental health professionals to provide you with more comprehensive care. You may even be able to arrange to have your initial evaluation and surgery at a specialist clinic and then switch you follow-up care to somewhere more local to your home.
- Finally, find a physician who you feel comfortable with
During testing times, the last thing you want to deal with is a belligerent or uncaring physician. You may also want to have a greater say in your treatment, and may want to feel that your doctor is willing to work with you as a team throughout the entire process of making you well again.
In terms of hospitals, a hospital that has been designated a Comprehensive Cancer Center by the National Cancer Institute will be able to offer additional advantages, because it has demonstrated that it has a strong research program that supports its clinical practice.
Nurses are also an excellent resource as they may be able to recommend a good doctor. Their knowledge is not only based on medical expertise but also from being a co-worker with the physician.
Whichever physician you chose to help you, Dr. Sax and her team are on hand to listen to your concerns and assist you however they can. Using MelaFind® during a skin exam allows Dr. Sax to examine irregular moles with more accuracy than any other procedure.
Talk to us in the first instance on 941-254-2321.</strong