This is a guest post from Penn Medicine about an important topic that is very near and dear to my heart.
After a brave 5 year battle with her melanoma, I lost a very dear friend of mine to this disease in January 2010. She was in her early 40’s, so young and vibrant with so much more life to look forward to with her husband and her gorgeous then 6 year old daughter. Her story about her mole detection, the follow up, and the eventual spread of the disease to her lymph nodes, her lungs, her brain and even her spinal cord gave those of us close to her quite an education about melanoma and it’s potential all-encompassing effects. It is a merciless disease, as all cancers can be, which is why being vigilant about skin checks is so critically important.
Please, if you read no other posts on this blog this week, read this one. Detecting skin discolorations, markings, and/or moles early is your best defense against this disease that took my sweet friend away from us.
Skin Cancer Awareness and Education in Philadelphia
Melanoma is the most serious type of cancer of the skin. What may begin as a discoloration or change of the skin or a mole can quickly spread to lymph nodes and other areas of the body such as the liver, lungs, bones and brain if it is melanoma.
May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month. As part of its mission to educate and inform people about melanoma, Penn’s Abramson Cancer Center is hosting its 8th Annual Melanoma Conference from 8 am to 2:30 pm on Friday, May 13 at the Hilton on City Line Avenue in Philadelphia.
This conference is free of charge, and open to newly diagnosed patients, people at risk for melanoma, survivors of melanoma and family members or caregivers of those with melanoma.
Penn Medicine experts will cover a variety of topics such as promising new discoveries in melanoma research, latest advances in dermatological care, surgery and medical treatments, and will host question and answer sessions with nationally recognized experts in the field of melanoma treatment and research.
You don’t have to be at the conference to get the education and information about melanoma.
Oncolink, the web’s first cancer resource, is hosting a web chat from Noon to 1 pm ET on Friday May 13 at the conference. Topics include sun safety, melanoma and its treatment and managing symptoms from melanoma treatment. People interested in the Oncolink web chat can visit www.oncolink.org/webchat to register, submit questions for the experts, participate in the live chat, and read transcripts of the chat after May 13.
On Twitter, follow live Tweets from Penn Medicine during the conference. Simply follow @pennmedicine and the conference hashtag #MelanomaACC on Twitter throughout the day for melanoma education and information.
Register and Learn
Free Skin Cancer Screenings at Penn Medicine
In addition to the melanoma conference, Penn Medicine is hosting free skin cancer screenings from 8 am to noon on Saturday, May 21. Penn dermatologist will provide skin checks and determine your risk for developing skin cancer during this free program.
Registration is required. Visit Penn Medicine for more information, and call 215-662-2737 to register.
Penn’s Abramson Cancer Center is comprised of over 400 doctors and scientists, all of whom are dedicated to increasing knowledge concerning the prevention and cure of cancer. As part of Penn Medicine, it is able to build upon the resources of one of the nation’s foremost medical centers, enabling it to address all of its patients’ medical needs. For more information, please call 800-789-PENN.