Skin Cancer Clinic's - Early Detection & Treatment  - Brisbane Northside - Book a PDT Light Therapy Assessment today

Melanoma Scan is your local skin cancer clinic in Brisbane's Northside. Early Detection and Treatment Centre.

 

Skin check

  • Skin Cancer FAQ

     

    Some Skin Cancer Frequently Asked Questions

    What is skin cancer?

    Skin cancer is a group of skin cells that have been damaged in a way that results in uncontrolled growth.  Depending on the type of skin cancer, this can result in spread to distant sites in the body or locally destructive growth.  Either forms of spread can result in damage to the body and eventual death if not treated.

    Skin Cancer FAQ

     

    What causes skin cancer?

    The vast majority of skin cancers are caused by exposure to ultraviolet light in the form of sun exposure but also from artificial sources such as solariums and arc welding.  Other causes of skin cancer include exposure to cancer causing chemicals such as arsenic, or ionising radiation.  These causes are much less common than ordinary sunburn from the sun. Many Australians are burnt on a regular basis, and sunburns are often associated with outdoor activities we spend our leisure time doing, such as outdoor sports, gardening and swimming.  Many outdoor workers are also burnt frequently although workplace health and safety prevention has helped to some degree.

     

    What is sun burn and how can I prevent it?

    Sunburn is the reaction of your skin to exposure to ultraviolet radiation from the sun. Depending on your skin type and the season, sunburn can occur after as little as ten minutes of sun exposure if adequate protection is not provided. Fair skin types and people with light coloured hair and eyes are the most prone to sun burn and hence to the subsequent development of skin cancer.  Most Australians are aware of the danger of sun exposure, but sun burn is still very common because people underestimate the amount of ultraviolet radiation they are exposing themselves to.  This includes days when it is overcast, cooler or windy, when the burning effects of the sun may not be noticed before a sunburn has already happened.  All sunburns cause damage to the cells of your skin, and these changes include damage to the DNA of your cells.  Over many years, enough damage to the DNA of your cells can accumulate to cause a skin cancer to develop.  Many older people experience skin cancers many years after the activities that caused them have stopped, and may continue to have skin cancers appear from time to time despite minimal sun exposure.

    Prevention of sun burn is through covering your skin with clothing, hats and sunglasses or through the use of sunscreens at all times when ultraviolet light is intense enough to damage your skin.  This is typically between 10am and 3pm although this varies with season and climate.  Here in Queensland in the summer months the UV index may be extreme from early morning though to early evening

     sunburn

     

  • Skin Cancer Management

    Skin cancers are managed with either destructive methods or excision.  Radiation therapy is use in limited circumstances for aggressive skin cancer or for treatment of skin cancers where surgery or curettage is inappropriate or not possible. 

  • Skin Cancer Treatment

    Skin Cancers can be Treated Using Surgical and Non-Surgical Treatments

    Surgical treatments used for treatment of skin cancers are physical treatments to remove the tumour.  Depending on the thickness of the lesion the treatment may be more or less invasive.  Thicker tumours are generally treated with excision and techniques include elipse (boat shaped excision), flaps and grafts. On occasion the wound may be left open for a period of time to await results of histopathology (as in the so called 'Slow Moh's'), but in most cases the wound is closed immediately following the removal of the tumour.  Surgical treatments also include diathermy and serial curettage.  This is usually used for superficial tumours on areas of the body where recurrence is less likely.  Both small and large tumours can be treated with this technique.

    Non-surgical treatments are treatments using medications to attack and remove the tumour. They include Aldara (Imiquimod), Efudix, and Metvix PDT (Photodynamic therapy).  These treatments are generally used for lesions which are thin and on areas of the body where recurrence is less likely, although small superficial lesions on higher-risk areas may be suitable for these treatments.

  • Skin Tag Removal

    Skin Tag Removal

    Skin tags are small benign growths attached to the skin by a small thin stalk. Skin tag removal is a simple process completed by a doctor. Removing skin tags at home can be painful and often bleed heavily or become infected.

  • Squamous Cell Carcinoma

    Squamous Cell Carcinoma  - Skin Cancer Type

    Squamous Cell Carcinoma (SCC) is the second most common skin cancer, and often occur in elderly people who have had extensive sun exposure over their lifetimes.

  • Sunspots

    Sunspots

    Sunspots, which are also called solar or actinic keratoses, are pink or tan coloured scaly spots that feel slightly rough to the touch. They occur commonly in people over 40 with light skin and hair/eyes and on skin that’s often exposed to the sun.  Most common areas are the face, tips of the ears, back of hands and forearms. 

  • What age do I need to have my children's skin checked?

    Most children are at very low risk of skin cancers, so regular skin checks are not routinely recommended unless there are particular concerns.  While skin cancers including melanoma are rare, they do occur, so if there is a mole or spot that is changing or growing at an accelerated rate, or looks odd or different to every other mole on the child’s body, then they should be checked to ensure it is not a cancer.

    Protecting our Little Ones: Why Children Need Regular Skin Cancer Checks

    As parents, ensuring the health and well-being of our children is paramount. One significant aspect of this care is protecting their delicate skin from potential harm. Skin cancer, although often associated with adults, is also a concern for children. Understanding the risks and taking preventive measures can play a crucial role in safeguarding our little ones.

    Why is skin cancer a concern for children?

    When it comes to skin cancer in children, there are specific risks that parents need to be aware of. Children can develop skin cancer, including melanoma, the most dangerous type of skin cancer. Factors such as sun exposure and a family history of skin cancer can increase the risk of developing skin cancer at a young age.

    How does sun exposure contribute to skin cancer in children?

    Sun exposure, especially during the high UV levels of the day, can lead to skin damage in children. Prolonged exposure to UV rays without adequate protection can significantly increase the risk of developing skin cancer later in life.

    Is there a link between a family history of skin cancer and children developing it?

    Children with a family history of skin cancer are at a higher risk of developing the disease themselves. Genetic predisposition can play a role in the likelihood of a child developing skin cancer, making regular skin checks even more crucial for early detection.

    What role do moles play in skin cancer development?

    Moles are common on the skin and usually harmless. However, they can also be a precursor to skin cancer, particularly melanoma. Regularly checking moles for any changes is essential in monitoring the risk of skin cancer in children.

    Why do moles need to be checked regularly?

    Regular mole checks are important because any changes in size, shape or colour can indicate potential issues. Monitoring moles can help detect early signs of melanoma and other forms of skin cancer.

    Can a large number of moles increase the risk of skin cancer in children?

    Having a high number of moles, especially more than 100, can indicate an increased risk for skin cancer. Children with numerous moles should undergo regular skin checks to ensure early detection and prevention of potential skin cancer.

    How important is sun protection for children?

    Ensuring proper sun protection for children is vital in reducing the risk of developing skin cancer. Parents play a key role in implementing sun safety measures from a young age to instill good habits that can protect their children's skin in the long term.

    What are the recommended sun safety measures for children?

    Recommended sun safety measures include using sunscreen with a high SPF, wearing protective clothing, hats, and sunglasses, seeking shade during peak UV hours, and avoiding tanning beds. These practices help lower the risk of skin damage and skin cancer.

    How does sunscreen help in preventing skin cancer in kids?

    Sunscreen acts as a barrier against harmful UV rays that can cause skin damage and increase the risk of skin cancer. Applying sunscreen regularly, especially before outdoor activities, provides added protection for children's delicate skin.

    When should children start getting regular skin checks?

    Early detection is key in managing skin cancer risks in children. Parents should consider scheduling regular skin cancer checks for their children starting at a specific age to monitor any changes and signs that may indicate skin cancer.

    What are the signs of skin cancer that parents should look out for in their kids?

    Signs of skin cancer in children include unusual moles, sores that do not heal, changes in skin colour or texture and persistent itching or bleeding. Being vigilant and seeking professional advice if any concerning signs appear is crucial in protecting children's skin health.

    Why is it important to start monitoring for skin cancer early in life?

    Starting skin cancer monitoring early establishes a routine that can help detect any abnormalities or potential issues promptly. Early intervention and timely treatment significantly improve outcomes and reduce the long-term effects of skin cancer on children.

    What are the long-term effects of childhood sunburns on skin cancer risk?

    Childhood sunburns can have lasting implications on skin health and increase the risk of developing skin cancer later in life. Parents must understand the consequences of sunburns in childhood and take steps to protect their children from the harmful effects of UV exposure.

    How does a history of sunburns in childhood increase the risk of developing skin cancer later in life?

    Repeated sunburns in childhood can lead to cumulative skin damage that elevates the risk of developing skin cancer in adulthood. The long-term effects of sunburns emphasise the importance of sun protection from an early age.

    What can parents do to protect their children from the harmful effects of sunburn?

    Parents can protect their children from sunburn by applying sunscreen regularly, limiting outdoor activities during peak sun hours, providing protective clothing and educating them about sun safety practices. These preventive measures reduce the risk of skin damage and skin cancer associated with sun exposure.

     
  • What can I do to reduce scarring?

    The Melanoma Scan doctor and nurse will give you detailed instructions on how to care for your wound to reduce scarring. 

    Shave excisions

    With Shave excisions, the best results can be achieved using moist wound healing, using antibiotic ointments such as chloromycetin ointment or otocomb on high risk areas for infection, or using strataderm or stratamed silicone containing gels for areas at risk of keloid scarring.  For some areas simple moist wound dressings using Vaseline, antiseptic creams or pawpaw ointment may be a low cost and suitable alternative.  Your doctor will recommend the treatment that he believes is most suitable for your particular wound and situation.

    Ellipse excisions

    With ellipse excisions, taping is an important aspect of wound care to prevent a stretched up scar despite the support of the deep sutures. Equally important is abstaining where possible from exercise for up to 6 weeks following surgery.  That may not always be possible with people engaged in manual work, but often with care and getting assistance with lifting and carrying, stretching of the scar can be minimised.

    Keloid scarring is a feared outcome for all excisions, however is very uncommon outside of a small group of people who appear to be prone to them.  In this group, silicone gels are utilised and the wound is reviewed 3-4 weeks after surgery to see if there is any sign of keloid formation, which can often appear after apparently normal early healing as a raised red itchy and uncomfortable scar.  Occasionally steroid injections may be used to halt keloid formation or reduce an established keloid scar, but the results are not always satisfactory in this keloid prone group of patients.

    Melanoma Scan - Skin Cancer Clinic

    Minimising Scars After Surgery for Skin Cancer Treatment

    Scars are a natural part of the healing process, especially after skin cancer surgery such as Mohs surgery. While the removal of cancerous cells is crucial, many individuals are concerned about the appearance of scars post-surgery. Fortunately, there are several effective methods and treatments available to minimise scarring and improve the overall appearance of the skin.

    What Are Effective Ways to Reduce Scarring Post Skin Cancer Removal?

    Minimising scarring with proper care is essential in promoting optimal wound healing and reducing the appearance of scars. Following post-operative care instructions, such as keeping the surgical site clean and avoiding excessive sun exposure, can aid in scar prevention. Using silicone gel for scar reduction is a popular method that helps flatten and fade scars over time, improving the skin's appearance.

    Sunscreen plays a crucial role in scar prevention by protecting the skin from harmful UV rays that can darken scars and hinder the healing process. Regular application of sunscreen on the scarred area can help prevent discoloration and promote better scar healing, leading to improved overall skin health.

    What Are the Treatment Options to Reduce the Appearance of Existing Scars?

    Skin grafts are commonly used in scar revision to improve the appearance of existing scars. This procedure involves transferring healthy skin to the scarred area to promote better healing and reduce scar visibility. Utilising injections for scar tissue reduction is another effective method that can help break down scar tissue and improve the overall texture of the skin.

    Benefits of silicone in scar management are well-documented, as silicone sheets or gels can help hydrate the scarred area and improve its elasticity, ultimately leading to a smoother and less noticeable scar. Incorporating silicone products into a scar care routine can significantly enhance the appearance of existing scars.

    How Can Keloid Scars Be Prevented or Treated?

    Understanding keloid formation and treatment is crucial in preventing and managing keloid scars. Keloids are raised scars that extend beyond the original incision site and can be challenging to treat. Effective methods to reduce the likelihood of keloid scarring include using pressure garments or silicone sheets to help flatten and soften the scars.

    Various techniques, such as cryotherapy or laser therapy, can be utilised to minimise keloid scars by targeting excess scar tissue and promoting a more even skin texture. By implementing a comprehensive treatment plan that addresses the specific characteristics of keloid scars, individuals can effectively manage and improve the appearance of these challenging scar types.

    For further information, please feel free to Contact Us or follow the link to request an appointment by clicking Book Now.

  • What is skin cancer?

    What is skin cancer?

    Skin cancer is a group of skin cells that have been damaged in a way that results in uncontrolled growth.  Depending on the type of skin cancer, this can result in spread to distant sites in the body or locally destructive growth.  Either forms of spread can result in damage to the body and eventual death if not treated.

    Skin cancer are caused due to the abnormal growth of skin cells, most often developing on skin exposed to the sun. Melanoma is the most dangerous form of skin cancer and can spread rapidly to other parts of the body if not treated early. Understanding the symptoms and treatments related to melanoma is crucial for effective cancer care.

    WHAT IS SKIN CANCER?

     

    Type of Skin Cancer

    There are various forms of skin cancer that individuals may develop. Melanoma cancer is the most common type of cancer that starts in the melanocytes, the cells that give skin its colour. It is less common than basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma, which are the most prevalent types of skin cancer.

    Overview of Different Types of Skin Cancer

    The main types of skin cancer in the world include basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and melanoma. Basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma are known as non-melanoma skin cancers, originating in the top layer of the skin.

    Understanding Melanoma

    Melanoma is a type of cancer that develops from the pigment-containing cells in the skin. It is considered the most serious form of skin cancer due to its ability to spread quickly to other organs if not treated early.

    Main Types of Skin Cancer

    Basal and squamous cell carcinoma are the primary forms of skin cancer, accounting for the highest rates of skin cancer worldwide. While they are generally less aggressive than melanoma, early detection and treatment are still essential. These are very common types of skin cancers. 

    What Causes Skin Cancer?

    The development of skin cancer is often linked to prolonged exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun or tanning beds. Factors such as frequent sunburns, light skin complexion, and a family history of skin cancer can contribute to the risk of developing common cancer.

    Factors that Contribute to Skin Cancer Development

    Various factors can increase the likelihood of developing skin cancer, including a weakened immune system, exposure to carcinogens, and genetic predisposition. Understanding these risk factors is crucial in preventing skin cancer.

    How Skin Cancer Develops in Skin Cells

    Skin cancer can arise when DNA damage occurs in skin cells, leading to uncontrolled growth and tumour formation. The mutations that drive skin cancer can be triggered by UV radiation, chemicals, or inherited genetic conditions.

    Role of UV Radiation in Skin Cancer Formation

    UV radiation from the sun is a major contributing factor to the development of skin cancer. Prolonged exposure to UV rays can damage the DNA in skin cells, increasing the risk of mutations that can lead to skin cancer over time.

    Skin Cancer Prevention

    Preventing skin cancer involves taking proactive measures to safeguard your skin from harmful UV radiation and other risk factors. Regular skin checks and sun protection are key components of skin cancer prevention.

    Tips to Protect Your Skin from Skin Cancer

    Protecting your skin from the sun's harmful rays by using sunscreen, wearing protective clothing, and seeking shade during peak hours can help reduce the risk of developing skin cancer. It is essential to be mindful of sun exposure, especially for individuals with fair skin.

    Importance of Regular Skin Checks

    Regular skin checks, including self-examinations and dermatologist assessments, play a vital role in the early detection of skin cancer. Identifying suspicious moles or skin lesions promptly can lead to timely intervention and improved treatment outcomes.

    Understanding the Link Between Sun Exposure and Skin Cancer

    The connection between sun exposure and skin cancer is well-established, with UV radiation being a known carcinogen. Limiting sun exposure, wearing protective clothing, and using sunscreen are essential strategies for reducing the risk of skin cancer.

    Skin Cancer Diagnosis

    Diagnosing skin cancer involves a series of evaluations and tests to determine the presence of cancerous cells in the skin. Medical professionals use various diagnostic methods, including biopsies and imaging techniques, to confirm the diagnosis of skin cancer.

    How Skin Cancer Is Diagnosed

    Physicians typically conduct a visual examination of the skin to identify suspicious growths or changes in moles that may indicate skin cancer. Further diagnostic procedures, such as dermoscopy or biopsy, may be performed to confirm the diagnosis.

    Diagnostic Tests for Skin Cancer

    Diagnostic tests such as skin biopsies, imaging scans, and blood tests are utilised to detect and characterise skin cancer. These tests help healthcare providers determine the extent of the cancer and plan an appropriate course of treatment.

    Role of Biopsy in Confirming Skin Cancer

    A biopsy is a common procedure used to gather tissue samples from suspicious skin lesions for laboratory analysis. The results of a skin biopsy can confirm the presence of cancerous cells and provide crucial information for determining the type and stage of skin cancer.

    Skin Cancer Treatments

    The treatment of skin cancer varies depending on the type, stage, and location of the cancerous growths. Common treatment modalities include surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, immunotherapy, and targeted therapy.

    Main Treatments for Different Types of Skin Cancer

    Each type of skin cancer may require a specific treatment approach tailored to the individual's condition. Surgery, radiation therapy, and systemic treatments like immunotherapy are among the mainstay options for managing skin cancer effectively.

    Surgery as a Common Skin Cancer Treatment

    Surgical procedures such as excision, Mohs surgery, and lymph node dissection are commonly used to remove cancerous lesions and prevent the spread of skin cancer. Surgery is often recommended for early-stage skin cancers with defined borders.

    Role of Chemotherapy and Radiation Therapy in Skin Cancer Treatment

    Chemotherapy and radiation therapy are systemic treatments that target cancer cells throughout the body. These therapies may be recommended for advanced skin cancers or as adjuvant treatments following surgery to eliminate any remaining cancer cells.

  • What is sun burn and how can I prevent it?

    Sunburn is the reaction of your skin to exposure to ultraviolet radiation from the sun. Depending on your skin type and the season, sunburn can occur after as little as ten minutes of sun exposure if adequate protection is not provided. Fair skin types and people with light coloured hair and eyes are the most prone to sun burn and hence to the subsequent development of skin cancer.  Most Australians are aware of the danger of sun exposure, but sun burn is still very common because people underestimate the amount of ultraviolet radiation they are exposing themselves to.  This includes days when it is overcast, cooler or windy, when the burning effects of the sun may not be noticed before a sunburn has already happened.  All sunburns cause damage to the cells of your skin, and these changes include damage to the DNA of your cells.  Over many years, enough damage to the DNA of your cells can accumulate to cause a skin cancer to develop.  Many older people experience skin cancers many years after the activities that caused them have stopped, and may continue to have skin cancers appear from time to time despite minimal sun exposure.

    Sun Burn Prevention

    Prevention of sun burn is through covering your skin with clothing, hats and sunglasses or through the use of sunscreens at all times when ultraviolet light is intense enough to damage your skin.  This is typically between 10am and 3pm although this varies with season and climate.  Here in Queensland in the summer months the UV index may be extreme from early morning though to early evening

  • Why use Melanoma Scan to have my mole removal?

    Melanoma Scan doctors are dedicated skin cancer doctors, who are focussed on giving you the best outcome of your mole removal

    Whether it is a cosmetic shave excision, or a biopsy to diagnose or exclude melanoma, your doctor will provide you with the best experience possible under the circumstances, and the piece of mind that your mole will always be tested to exclude the possibility of melanoma or other skin cancer in the tissue.

    We are dedicated to giving you the best possible cosmetic outcome as well, especially where the mole is removed from the face or body because it is raised and getting traumatised or just generally “in the way”.  In these examples, our primary focus is on achieving an excellent cosmetic outcome. 

    Where melanoma is a possibility, the focus is on giving the pathologist the whole lesion to analyse, so a larger wound may be required, which of course can take longer to heal, but will ensure that the most accurate diagnosis is achieved. Your doctor will guide you through the process step by step to ensure it is pain free and minimise inconvenience.

    Melanoma Scan - Skin Cancer Clinic

    For further information, please feel free to Contact Us or follow the link to request an appointment by clicking Book Now.

     

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Our team of doctors with many years of experience

All three clinics are proud to offer the latest in skin cancer imaging technology with 14 doctors who have a special interest skin cancer and associated conditions. Included on our staff are 5 female skin cancer doctors.

We also can boast a total of eight different languages spoken by amongst our doctors, making our clinic more accessible for patients from diverse backgrounds.

Dr Paul Annells - Melanoma Scan Clinicr Doctor

Dr Paul Annells

Current Qualifications:
BMBS, FRACGP, Master of Medicine (Skin Cancer)

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Dr Reza Moradi - Melanoma Scan Skin Clinic

Dr Reza Moradi

Current Qualifications:
MD, FRACGP, AMC , Senior Lecturer ( UQ)

Languages Spoken: English and Persian

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Dr Dao Vo - Melanoma Scan Skin Cancer Clinic

Dr Dao Vo

Current Qualifications:
MBBS, FRACGP

Languages Spoken: English and Vietnamese

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Dr Marcio Francisco

Dr Marcio Francisco

Current Qualifications:
MBBS, AMC Advanced Standard Certificate, FRAGGP, Master of Medicine, Member of the Skin Cancer College of Australia (SCCA)

Languages: English, Portuguese

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Dr Kate Crilly - Melanoma Scan Skin Cancer Clinic

Dr Kate Crilly

Current Qualifications:
MBBS (London), MRCGP, FRACGP, Master of Medicine (Skin Cancer).

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Dr Donna Westbrook  - Melanoma Scan Skin Cancer Clinic

Dr Donna Westbrook

Current Qualifications:
MBBS (HONS), FANZCA

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Dr Carmen Gutierrez  - Melanoma Scan Skin Cancer Clinic

Dr Carmen Gutierrez

Current Qualifications:
MBBS (Barcelona), FRACGP, Master of Medicine (Skin Cancer).

Languages Spoken: English, French and Spanish

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Dr Chris Robinson

Dr. Chris Robinson

Current Qualifications
MBCHB, BSc (1st Class, Hons), MRCGP, Dip Derm (Aus), M Med (skin cancer, Dist), FAID, FSCCA

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Dr Ben Smith

Dr Ben Smith

Current Qualifications: 
FRACGP, MBBS, BPHTY, SCCA

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Dr Cassandra Faris

Dr Cassandra Faris

Current Qualifications:
MBBS, FRACGP, MMED (Skin Cancer)

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Dr Boon

Dr Boon

Current Qualifications:
MBBS, FRACGP, Master of Medicine (skin cancer), Primary Skin Cancer, MS (Gen Surg)

Languages Spoken: English and Tamil

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Dr. Julius Soriano

Dr. Julius Soriano

Current Qualifications:
Skin Cancer Doctor
RN, MD,FRACGP,
Prof.Dip.ScMed

Languages Spoken: English and Filipino

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