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Free Screenings for Skin Cancer

May 11, 2010 12:15 PM
Arthur Nead

In recognition of National Skin Cancer Awareness Month, the Tulane Cancer Center is offering free skin cancer screenings from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Monday, May 24, at the Tulane Cancer Center Comprehensive Clinic, 150 S. Liberty St. in downtown New Orleans.


Louisiana music festivals can mean fun in the sun, but protection against harmful sun exposure is critically important. (Photo by Sally Asher)

"Skin cancer screenings are a valuable tool for identifying suspect skin lesions in people who don't normally have their skin checked," says Dr. Alan Lewis, associate professor of dermatology at the Tulane School of Medicine. "Last year's screenings allowed us to identify a number of patients with skin cancer who would otherwise have gone undiagnosed. Early diagnosis and treatment is the best way to avoid the adverse outcomes associated with skin cancer."

According to the American Cancer Society, more than one million unreported cases of basal or squamous cell cancers occur annually. Most, but not all, of these forms of skin cancer are highly curable. The most common serious form of skin cancer is melanoma, which is expected to be diagnosed in approximately 68,720 persons this year; 8,650 of them will die of this disease.

Those who have experienced severe sunburn or have a history of sun exposure, those with fair skin who burn easily and anyone experiencing a recent change in the appearance of a mole should consider being screened. Screenings involve a head-to-toe physical skin assessment by a Tulane dermatologist. All participants will receive a complimentary sample bottle of sunscreen (SPF 30), and those requiring follow-up after screening will be encouraged to contact their personal physicians, or they will be referred to a Tulane physician.

An appointment is required for a free skin cancer screening. To make an appointment, call the Tulane Cancer Center at 504-988-5800 or 800-588-5800.

Complimentary parking is available in the Saratoga Parking Garage, located on the corner of Cleveland and Saratoga streets. The Tulane Cancer Center Comprehensive Clinic is located on the ground floor of this building.