In the Daily Mail yesterday was an article telling the heartbreaking story of Lianne Gosling, who at just 33 died of melanoma.
The story is heartbreaking because melanoma survival rates are very good if caught early and Lianne had approached a GP a year before she was eventually diagnosed.
While we expect GPs to have all the answers, in reality they can only work with the information we give them and the truth of the matter is that quite often we don’t give them much to work with.
We have spoken with a number of GPs about melanoma and we always get the same story:
“We ask patients whether their mole has changed, been itchy or bled and most aren’t able to tell us. It makes it very difficult to make a diagnosis without the full picture.”
We all need to actively be checking ourselves for changing moles whether it be by regular self exams, taking photos every once and while or using a service designed to detect changes like ours.
That way we can help GPs to help us, and reduce the number of tragedies like Lianne’s.