While skin cancer is the most common type of cancer affecting Americans today, the good news is that it’s almost 100% curable if it’s found and treated early.
Paramus, NJ (PRWEB) February 21, 2012
With the increase in skin cancer due to sun exposure, New Jersey plastic surgeon, Dr. Paul M. Parker, MD, emphasizes how imperative skin cancer prevention is in all seasons, but especially now as the spring and summer are nearing .
Skin cancer rates in the United States are skyrocketing, partly due to aging baby boomers who sunned themselves unprotected for much of their youth and young people looking to emulate celebrities. Between 1992 and 2006, skin cancer rates increased 77% and are increasing at a rate of 4.2% per year. Environment and heredity are the two leading causes of skin cancer. While individuals cannot do anything about genetics, they can control exposure to the harmful UV rays that accumulate damage over time. Protecting your skin with sunblock, staying out of the sun during peak hours, and wearing protective clothing are all preventative measures. While fair skinned people and individuals of Northern European heritage are the most susceptible to skin cancer, depletion of the ozone has increased the amount of harmful rays.
“While skin cancer is the most common type of cancer affecting Americans today, the good news is that it’s almost 100% curable if it’s found and treated early. Skin cancers generally appear on very visible parts of the body and patients are often concerned about how they’ll look after treatment. As a plastic surgeon in New Jersey, we strive to minimize scarring while effectively treating the affected area,” explained Dr. Parker.
The most common skin cancers are divided into three categories: basal cell, squamous cell, and melanoma. Both basal cell and squamous cell cancers are usually very curable if caught early. Melanoma is potentially much more serious but very treatable if caught early. Melanoma, if left untreated, can grow quickly and invade nearby tissues and organs, causing damage and death.
Dr. Parker is experienced in treating Northern New Jersey skin cancer patients who come to him with skin lesions. He will treat the patients himself, refer them to a dermatologist for topical treatment if applicable, or work in conjunction with a Moh’s surgeon (specialized dermatological surgeon) to repair the excised area.
“I had Basal Cancer removed from my face. I was nervous about what the scar would look like. I am so delighted that there was never a scar. People don’t realize that I’ve had anything done. I am cancer free in that area, I don’t have a bad scar and it’s not red.” – Pat M., New Jersey skin cancer patient.
“While both the dermatologist and I deal with the skin, we differ in what we do. The dermatologist is the primary physician for screening and mapping the skin. My skills are in effectively excising skin cancers and skin lesions, then successfully repairing the area using surgical techniques to minimize scarring,” said Dr. Parker.
The media promotes a sun-kissed complexion as the ideal, which increases the risk of skin cancer for the younger generation. Since any tanning (indoor or outdoor) is considered skin damage that can lead to skin cancer and is considered a primary risk factor, education has become a major focus of the American Academy of Dermatology.
The American Academy of Dermatology has instituted the Skin Smart® education program. Plastic surgeons in New Jersey along with dermatologists in beach regions recommend following the recommendations of the AAD. The program includes the following recommendations: Apply a broad spectrum (UVA and UVB) 30+ SPF at least 30 minutes before exposure. Reapply after 2 hours, or after sweating or swimming. Wear protective clothing, such as hats, long sleeve shirts and pants, sunglasses in the sun whenever possible. Stay in the shade between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. when the sun is strongest. Protect children from the sun with sunscreen, allow them to play in shade and keep them in protective clothing. It is also recommended that individuals do a head to toe skin self-exam every month, avoid tanning booths, and visit a dermatologist annually for an exam.
All surgeries performed by Dr. Parker are done in the Parker Center’s very comfortable, on-site fully certified ambulatory surgical facility, Surgiplex. Many procedures are performed under local anesthesia. If the patient requires more than that, our team of board certified anesthesiologists can administer intravenous sedation or general anesthesia to make the patient perfectly comfortable for the procedure.
The staff at Parker Center is cognizant of the importance and timeliness of skin cancer procedures and will schedule these procedures in a timely matter. Our surgical coordinator will also obtain pre-certification from your insurance carrier prior to the procedure.
Everyone needs to make and keep a resolution to make skin protection a part of their everyday routine in 2012.
If you are interested in learning more about skin cancer prevention or New Jersey plastic surgery, please contact the Parker Center for Plastic Surgery at 201.967.1212.
About Dr. Parker
Paul M. Parker, MD is the Medical Director of the Parker Center for Plastic Surgery. He has over 20 years’ experience and is well known for his surgical results as well as his commitment to patient care and satisfaction. Dr. Parker graduated from George Washington University School of Medicine and completed his residency in general and plastic surgery at New York University Medical Center.
Parker Center for Plastic Surgery
122 East Ridgewood Avenue
Paramus, NJ 07090