The Effectiveness of Skin Cancer Screening Debate Video

Last week, "New York Times" columnist Jane Brody reported on a study published in "The Annals of Internal Medicine" which stated that skin cancer screening exams by primary care physicians were not effective towards the early detection of skin can...
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Dr. Neal Schultz: Hello I'm Dr. Neal Schultz and welcome to DermTV. I like most of my colleagues believe in the critical importance of a regular skin cancer screening examinations for the early detection and the cure of skin cancer. Last Tuesday in the New York Times an article was written about this subject. Jane Brody in her regular Tuesday Health column wrote an article entitled "Updating the Rules for Skin Cancer Checks". In this article she accurately reported on an article published in a very well known medical journal and that article stated that skin cancer screening examinations by primary care physicians were not effective at the early detection of skin cancer. Primary care physicians are your gynecologist, general practitioners, internist, and family practitioners. The reason that I am talking about this today is because I want to make sure that anybody who read that article wasn't confused and thought that they said that skin cancer screenings by dermatologists weren't effective, they are. As a matter of fact every May, the American Academy of Dermatology sponsors a skin cancer screening program, free skin cancer screenings across the United States, and every year for the past ten to fifteen years, two to three hundred otherwise undetected skin cancers were discovered and treated early and materially changed those peoples life's. The article that Jane Brody quotes also says that self examination by patients isn't helpful at the early detection of skin cancer. I vehemently disagree. I have been doing skin cancer screening exams for almost thirty years and regularly my patients bring to my attention abnormal or irregular pre-cancers and important skin cancers. Look the bottom line is your best chance for the early detection and cure of skin cancers is to have a regular screening skin cancer examination by your dermatologist. Please join me again at dermtv.com. If you have a question please send it to me by visiting dermtv.com/question. I'm Dr. Neal Schultz and thank you for watching today.

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