Full Body Skin Exam
What is a Full Body Skin Exam?
A full body skin exam is a simple visual examination in which a skin care expert analyzes the skin for any growths that may be cancerous or pre-cancerous. This is a brief, non-invasive process that is used as an early detection strategy for skin cancer. While patients are encouraged to monitor any unusual growths in the skin on a regular basis, it is difficult for patients to check every spot on their body. In fact, spots like the neck, ears, back and shoulders are nearly impossible to fully inspect on your own. Since these are common locations for skin cancer development, it is helpful to have an expert examine them routinely.
How Often Should I Have a Full Body Skin Exam?
Full body skin exams are recommended on a yearly basis. If you are older, spend a lot of time outdoors, or have other qualities that make you more susceptible to skin cancer, you may consider having full body skin exams on a more frequent basis. It is not uncommon for patients in these categories to receive skin exams every 6 months.
Additionally, if you have noticed an unusual growth on the skin, there is never a bad time to have a skin exam. Meeting with a professional can give you peace of mind, and can also make a huge different in your treatment in the event that skin cancer is detected.
What Happens During a Full Body Skin Exam?
During the full body skin exam, you will undress so that your doctor can examine the skin clearly. You can remain in your undergarments if you’d like, as many patients prefer to inspect these areas in the privacy of their own home. If you spot anything suspicious, you can always ask about it during your examination. Your doctor will inform you if anything suspicious is found during your skin exam. In some cases, you will just be asked to keep an eye on a particular mole or growth. If there is a growth that is believed to be cancerous, we may recommend a biopsy. This involves the excision of the growth, which will then be examined in our lab to determine if it is cancerous or benign.
What if a Cancerous Growth is Discovered During My Full Body Skin Exam?
If we discover that you have a mole or related growth that is cancerous, we will be able to diagnose the skin cancer and recommend an appropriate treatment. Our Skin Cancer Center offers a full suite of skin cancer treatments, so you are in good hands. We’ll be able to tell you everything you can expect from your cancer treatment depending on the type of cancer discovered and its location.
If nothing unusual is discovered, then you will be able to return home immediately. This is a simple routine examination that is recommended for the early detection of skin cancer.
Are you overdue for a full body skin exam? Contact us today to schedule your consultation at Goodman Dermatology. We welcome patients from Canton, Jasper, Johns Creek and the neighboring cities of North Atlanta.