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Molemap versus Skincheck – What should I book?

Whilst the most common skin cancers in Australia are BCC’s and SCC’s, the skin cancer responsible for the most deaths is melanoma. Melanoma is usually detected as a pigmented lesion that shows some asymmetry in pigment and structures and also exhibits change when monitored over a short or long term. A molemap, including total body photography, is the best surveillance program to detect melanoma.
When booking in at the dermatologist or skin cancer clinic for your annual skin examination, you may ask yourself should I book in for a skin check or a molemap?” There are several deciding factors to consider .
“If you have a large number of moles, had a previous melanoma or someone in your immediate family has had melanoma, then you should consider having a molemap” .. “Also someone who has very sun-damaged skin, maybe a previous non-melanoma skin cancer, such as a basal cell carcinoma or a squamous cell carcinoma, who would be assessed as high risk for melanoma should consider a molemap over a skin check”.
“Because a molemap, including total body photography, involves taking high resolution photos of each area of the body along with high magnified images of individual irregular looking moles, we are able to detect any moles that are new or changing, both strong clues for melanoma, at the earliest stage” she said.
“Unfortunately because a molemap usually takes longer than a skin check appointment and needs specialised equipment, there is a significant price difference between a skin check and molemap. However, skin checks should always involve an experienced dermoscopist with a handheld dermatoscope checking every lesion on the skin thoroughly. The doctor can still assess every lesion for skin cancer but will not be able to determine if the lesion has changed since the last examination.”
Click here for more information on what happens in a molemap.

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