Monday, October 14, 2013

Report on To Your Health's "Is This Just a Mole or Could It Be More?"

by Barb Dion

Judy Whitman, Dr. Alyssa Paetau, Jan Stowell and Rosabelle Tifft  (photo B. Dion)
On October 3, WMSC presented its first To Your Health program for the fall session, “Is This Just a Mole or Could it be More?”

Dr. Alyssa Paetau, MD, from Western Maine Surgery (at Stephens Memorial Hospital in Norway), recommended a thorough skin examination as part of regular annual physical exams for people over the age of forty. She stressed the importance of checking the skin regularly for any changes, explaining how normal cells can become cancerous, and mentioned the two non-melanoma skin cancers, squamous cell and basal cell, the most common type of cancer.

Several methods of treating skin cancer, as described by Dr. Paetau, are excising it completely, radiation therapy, and cryotherapy (freezing). She spoke about the steps we can take to help prevent skin cancer: limiting UV light exposure, avoiding tanning beds, using sunscreen, and having annual skin checks.

The next To Your Health presentation, "How to Keep the Holidays Happy - Managing the Holiday Blues," will be held on Thursday, November 7 at 4:30 pm in the West Parish Congregational Church. These programs are open to the public and free of charge.

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