Doctors have issued a warning to the public about a major cancer threat that is being misdiagnosed since it looks like a common skin irritation.
According to Conservative Tribune, it’s called a nodular melanoma, and it starts out as a hard red bump that looks like a common pimple or an ingrown hair at first. However, it is actually killing thousands of people every year who ignore it for these reasons.
Melanomas cause nearly half of the skin cancer deaths in America, but they are actually one of the least common skin cancers. They are, however, one of the most deadly.
Non-specialist physicians often miss melanoma cases, especially rare nodular melanoma bumps. It’s typically dermatologists, who focus on the skin, who have a better chance of identifying a melanoma bump.
“Lack of pigmentation is a key reason for failure to recognize these unusual presentations as melanoma,” said John Kelly, an Associate Professor at the Australasian College of Dermatologists. “This kind of melanoma we see more often in older men and on the head and neck rather than trunk and limbs, but that’s just a slight preference it’s not that they all occur in older men.”
Kelly added that although doctors don’t want to cause mass hysteria over red bumps of any kind, there are some indicators that should send you straight to your dermatologist if you spot.
“If it has has been present for more than a month and grows bigger and bigger, it needs urgent removal,” Kelly said. Because less than half of nodular melanoma cases are diagnosed correctly, Kelly added that it’s important for general physicians to be aware of “unusual presentations” on the skin.
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