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Parkinson’s Skin Check

by Tom Sheppard

This took on real meaning for me a few days ago:

Melanoma is the deadliest form of skin cancer. In the early stages, Melanoma can be treated successfully with surgery alone, and survival rates are high, but after metastasis, survival rates drop significantly. Therefore, early and correct diagnosis is key for ensuring patients have the best possible prognosis. (From Cancer Biology and Therapy Journal)

GOOD NEWS – BAD NEWS

During a routine skin check, my dermatologist said there was a spot that she wanted to biopsy. Fine, I have heard that before and it was never a problem. A few days later, I got the get the call. The dermatologist said, “The results of the biopsy I did last week on your shoulder are back. I have good news and bad news. The bad news is, you have Melanoma, but the good news is, it is very small and we have discovered it early.”

The bad news was apparent to me, but the good not so much. After some research, the good news started to sound better. She caught it early and expected no more problems with that area. However, other spots could show up. The prescription for that is a skin check every three months.

A couple of days ago, I had surgery to remove the Melanoma. It was routine and took about an hour. The aftermath of the surgery is NO EXERCISE for two weeks. It was pretty clear that no compromise was forthcoming.

WHAT SCIENTISTS RESEARCH AND DOCTORS ARE FINDING

Studies suggest there might be a connection between Parkinson’s Disease and Melanoma.  My dermatologist said there have been more melanoma cases in her office since the pandemic started in March. Her colleagues are reporting the same. She isn’t sure why.  Also, she is seeing an increasing diagnosis of Melanoma in her Parkinson’s patients.

IF YOU HAVE PARKINSON’S, SEE A DERMATOLOGIST ANNUALLY!

Don’t count on your internist for a full head to toe skin check. The dermatologist I go to is very thorough.  It’s a hide and seek
game and you want somebody trained in the field. I am asking you to make that skin check appointment now and keep it.

This is not the report I wanted to see but I would rather see it now than a year from now.

Parkinson's Melanoma risk

MAKE THE APPOINTMENT – SEE THE DOC

3 Comments

  1. Peter Whyte

    Tom, important to know that melanoma cancer is not a condition caused by too much sun. Melanomas can show up in arm pits, legs or face. And of the three types (basil, squamis and melanoma), melanoma is the only dangerous real one, meaning it can get away on you. Depending on skin type, visits to your dermatologist should spaced no more than 1 year apart, or less for a visit if have a parched white northern European skin. Being of Irish and Scottish decent i go every other day. LOL

    I read years ago that the Pennsylvania Quakers have the most PwP per capita.

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