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News Room: Press Releases

May is National Skin Cancer Awareness Month

May is National Skin Cancer/Melanoma Awareness Month. Skin Cancer is one of the most common types of cancer, with over one million people diagnosed each year!

Fast Facts About Skin Cancer

  • Skin cancer and melanoma account for about 50% of all types of cancers diagnosed combined
  • Skin cancer is one of the more preventable types of cancer
  • More than 90% of skin cancer is causes by excessive exposure to the sun
  • Each hour, 1 person dies from skin cancer

Skin Cancer and Melanoma Basics
Skin cancer is divided into two categories: melanoma and non-melanoma. Melanoma is a dangerous form of skin cancer. Although serious, non-melanomas are much less life threatening and easier to treat.

Melanoma accounts for 4% of skin cancer cases diagnosed. It is estimated that 68,000 people will be diagnosed with melanoma in 2009. Almost 12,000 are expected to die of melanoma this year.

There are two common types of non-melanoma skin cancer: basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma.

Symptoms of Skin Cancer

  • A small lump (spot or mole) that is shiny, waxy, pale in color, and smooth in texture
  • A red lump (spot or mole) that is firm
  • A sore or spot that bleeds or become crusty. Also look for sores that don't heal
  • Rough and scaly patches on the skin
  • Flat scaly areas of the skin that are red or brown
  • Any new growth that is suspicious

If you suspect that a lump, spot, or mole may be suspicious of skin cancer, see your doctor. When detected early, it is highly treatable.

Read more about rising Melanoma rates from US News and World Report.

On May 28, Virtua Memorial will offer free skin cancer screenings performed by board-certified dermatologists Frederick Foti, MD; Germaine Camishion, MD, and Peter Lee, MD.

As one of New Jersey’s largest health systems, Virtua helps people be well, get well and stay well through a comprehensive range of health care services. Services are delivered through three health and wellness centers, three fitness centers, four acute care hospitals, primary and specialty physician practices with more than 240 physicians, urgent care centers, seven ambulatory surgery centers, home health services, two long-term care and rehabilitation centers, 12 paramedic units and a wide range of outpatient services. A leader in maternal and child health services, Virtua delivers more than 8,000 babies a year. Virtua also provides employment and wellness services to 1,700 businesses and corporations. An innovator in clinical and information technology such as electronic medical records, Virtua is recognized for its ground-breaking partnerships with GE Healthcare, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) and the Fox Chase Cancer Center. It is the official orthopedic provider for the Philadelphia Flyers. Virtua employs more than 8,400 people and has been honored as the #1 Best Place to Work in the Delaware Valley every year since 2007. It is the recipient of the Consumer Choice Award from the National Research Corporation. For more information, visit  www.virtua.org or www.virtuabroadcastnetwork.org.