What are skin checks?
Dermatologists perform a full-body professional skin exam to evaluate for cancerous or pre-cancerous lesions. These examinations are critical for persons with a history of skin cancer, patients on some immunosuppressive medications, and may be appropriate if you have multiple areas of concern or a history of multiple severe or blistering sunburns.
Why see a dermatologist for skin checks?
Early detection of skin cancer is essential! While not every person needs to have an annual skin check, those with a history of even one skin cancer are at risk for future skin cancers. During a skin check your dermatologist will look for recurrence of any previous skin cancers and determine if there are any new areas of concern.
How a dermatologist examines your skin
Your dermatologist will thoroughly check your skin, including those hard to see spots that you might have missed in your self exam. The skin will be examined visually and at times your doctor may touch the skin to evaluate raised, scaly, or bumpy lesions.
Your dermatologist will use a small handheld device called a dermatoscope to visualize the outer surface of the skin (the epidermis) and the layers just beneath it. This device is especially useful in visualizing skin cancers and can allow for more accurate diagnosis in trained hands.
What to expect at your appointment
Your skin check is fully customized to you depending on your medical history and areas of concern. You might have a full body skin check or we can just check one lesion.