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Spectrum Health offering free skin cancer screenings May 7

Posted at 11:15 AM, Apr 19, 2019

The best way to find skin cancer in its earliest and most treatable stage is by checking the skin regularly and having a dermatologist perform a focused skin cancer screening. Spectrum Health wants to help people prevent skin cancer, and is offering free skin cancer screening on May 7 at various locations across West Michigan.

Dr. Paul Wright, Surgical Oncologist and Chief of Cutaneous Oncology at Spectrum Health, and Dr. Kristi Hawley, a local dermatologist, talk about skin cancer and Spectrum Health's upcoming free community skin cancer screenings.

There are three different types of skin cancer Spectrum Health staff will be looking for:

  • Basal and Squamous Cell Skin Cancer: often found in the areas that are highly exposed to the sun, such as the head, neck, and arms. This skin cancer is very treatable.
  • Melanoma Skin Cancer: a less common, but more aggressive skin cancer.
  • Merkel Cell Skin Cancer: skin cancer is an uncommon type of skin cancer that causes cells to grow uncontrollably.

Screenings will consist of a visual inspection of the skin looking for irregular moles, blemishes, and other abnormalities. The process takes about 15 minutes, including paperwork and getting the skin checked.

The dermatologists will be asking attendees to share an area of concern to be checked. These are important because with early detection and proper treatment, there is a much higher cure rate. Regular self-skin exams along with a yearly examination by a dermatologist can help find early skin cancers.

Free screenings will take place at the following locations on Tuesday, May 7 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Appointments aren't required, and walk-ins are welcome.

Spectrum Health South Pavilion

80 68th St. SE, Suite 201, Cutlerville

Spectrum Health Medical Group

426 Michigan St NE, Grand Rapids

Spectrum Health Medical Group

588 East Lakewood Blvd, Holland

Spectrum Health Medical Group

2111 12 Mile Rd NW, Sparta

Spectrum Health United Hospital Cancer Center

615 S. Bower St., Greenville

Spectrum Health Integrated Care Campus – North Muskegon

2009 Holton Road, Muskegon

If you have been diagnosed with cancer and would like a second opinion or consultation, call 1.855.SHCANCER (855-742-2623).