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Novant Health Primary Care Salisbury to host free community skin cancer screenings

SALISBURY, N.C. – For the first time, Novant Health Primary Care Salisbury will host a community skin cancer screening on Friday, Oct. 20, from 1 to 3 p.m. at 1904 Jake Alexander Blvd. W., Suite 303. Dermatology Group of the Carolinas will be on-site to conduct the screenings.

Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In 2017, more than 85,000 people in the U.S. will be diagnosed with melanoma, the most aggressive type of skin cancer, and almost 10,000 people will die from the disease, according to the National Cancer Institute. If left untreated, it can spread to other organs and could become difficult to control.

Melanoma usually forms in skin that has been exposed to damaging sunlight, but it can form anywhere. Preventive measures consist of using sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15 and wearing wide-brimmed hats and sunglasses that block UV radiation. When melanoma is diagnosed in its early stages, treatment is less invasive. In fact, sometimes treatment can be as simple as a surgical procedure during a doctor’s visit.

Those who develop melanoma have various risk factors. Some include a family history of melanoma, having fair skin, freckles, light hair and moles. Research published in JAMA Dermatology has found that 66 percent of people with melanoma had 20 or fewer moles.

In North Carolina, the rate of melanoma cases has risen with an average increase of more than 5 percent per year from 1995 to 2011, according to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services. About 287 people die of melanoma each year in North Carolina.

To register for a screening, call 1-800-335-4921.

Posted on Friday, October 6, 2017