MelaFind is a first-of-its-kind technology used during skin exams to help dermatologists see under the skin’s surface. The device collects images 2.5 mm deep into the skin by combining multiple light waves with a photon sensor. The result is a multi-dimensional look at the makeup of individual skin lesions, including layers not visible to the naked eye. This allows us to catch the most aggressive, fastest growing form of skin cancer earlier than ever before.
MelaFind is FDA approved and pain-free. Most importantly, it will help us determine whether or not to biopsy atypical moles detected during a skin examination. Every hour, one person in the U.S. dies of melanoma and 15 people are diagnosed with the disease. Everyone is at risk for potentially developing the melanoma, but it is 100% curable when caught early. It is crucial to have a device like MelaFind to help us detect potential melanomas at the earliest, curable stage.
Some facts about melanoma:
· Melanoma, the most serious form of skin cancer, is characterized by the uncontrolled growth of pigment-producing cells.
· An irregular mole is a mole that has at least one characteristic in common with melanoma.
· Approximately 75 percent of all skin cancer deaths are from melanoma.
· When detected in its earliest stages, melanoma is highly curable. In fact, the average five-year survival rate for individuals whose melanoma is detected and treated before it spreads to the lymph nodes is 98 percent.
· Scientists have identified several risk factors for developing melanoma, including ultraviolet (UV) light exposure, moles (dysplastic nevi and congenital melanocytic nevi), fair skin, freckling, light hair and a family history of melanoma.
· However, everyone is at risk for melanoma, even people who are not fair-skinned, have never spent a lot of time in the sun, have always used sunscreen and have no family history of melanoma.
May 1 is National MelaFind Day and from now until May 1, Greenville Dermatology clients can book a free screening with the MelaFind device. To schedule a skin exam and see the device firsthand, please call us at (864) 242-5872.