Skin Cancer Awareness Month – tips from our skin cancer team | News

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Skin Cancer Awareness Month – tips from our skin cancer team

Kate Upshon

Our Lead Macmillan Clinical Nurse Specialist for Skin Cancer, Kate Upshon, and our oncology team are on a mission to spread the word about protecting ourselves from skin cancer.

The team will be holding an information stand in the entrance hall of our Guildford site on 18 May to get the message out there about simple ways to protect yourself from skin cancer by reducing exposure to UV light.

Cases of skin cancer are on the rise. According to Cancer Research UK, one in 36 men and one in 47 women will be diagnosed with melanoma (the deadliest form of skin cancer) in their lifetime.

Lead Clinical Nurse Specialist Kate Upshon said: “I’ve been working with skin cancer patients for the last eight years and in that time we’ve seen a huge increase in numbers of patients coming for oncology treatment, from around six a week to 70 a week.

“Awareness of skin cancer and what to look for is more widespread, which is one reason for this increase and that’s good because this is a disease that can be treated successfully if caught early.

“There have also been huge advances in systemic treatments for melanoma and other skin cancers, which have had a profound impact on patient survival following a diagnosis of metastatic skin cancers.

“But it’s important to keep reminding everyone of how to reduce their risk. There are five simple pointers to help you remember, which include slip on a T-shirt, slop on SPF 30+ sunscreen, slap on a broad brimmed hat, slide on some quality sunglasses and shade from the sun where possible.

“I am a trustee for a local charity that funds melanoma research, who have also collaborated with a national charity who help educate people such as beauticians and hairdressers who may be likely to spot the signs of skin cancer in members of the public. Groups that are particularly at risk are those working outdoors, people with fair skin, children and those who use sun beds.”

If you’re worried about a mole on your skin or checking for signs of skin cancer, visit the website: How to spot the early signs of skin cancer ( for more information and drop by the information stand on 18 May.

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