- Is a Skin Surveillance Program (SSP) procedure right for me?
- What’s the difference between the SSP and other skin cancer screening programs?
- What happens when I arrive?
- Who performs the procedure?
- How long does it take?
- Is it safe? Does it hurt?
- How will I learn of my results?
- What will happen if something suspicious shows up?
- How often should I have a MoleSafe procedure?
- What will happen to my MoleSafe records if I move out of the area?
- How accurate is the SSP?
- How much does it cost?
- Does MoleSafe do mole removals?
- What happens at a follow-up appointment?
- How do I book an appointment?
- How long does the final patient report take?
- Who do I see when the report says I need to have something done?
- Are you open Saturdays or any late nights?
Is a Skin Surveillance Program (SSP) procedure right for me?
If you answer yes to any of the following questions, then the SSP service may be right fit for you:
- Concerned about a mole or lesion (e.g., it’s changing size, shape, itching or bleeding)?
- Have a personal history of melanoma or other skin cancers?
- Have a family history of melanoma?
- Have many moles?
- Have funny looking moles (called atypical moles)?
- Are fair skinned and have light colored eyes?
- Suffered from sunburn during childhood or adolescence (at least one blistering sunburn)?
- Frequent outdoor activities?
- Have a history of UVA sunbed/solarium/tanning salon use?
What’s the difference between the SSP and other skin cancer screening programs?
MoleSafe’s SSP is the world’s most advanced skin cancer screening program. What sets us apart from the others is that we combine advanced technology with the skills of a panel of expert international dermatologists/dermoscopists to diagnose melanoma and other skin cancers at the earliest possible stage.
Our innovative technology includes a complete electronic medical record of your skin comprising total body photography, total digital dermoscopy and serial monitoring. In addition, all of these diagnostic tools have been clinically proven to help specialists detect melanoma at the earliest possible stage.
The SSP also utilizes the skills of highly trained dermatologists/dermoscopists to assess every SSP patient. Our specialists have undergone a minimum of 13 years of training and have achieved expertise in dermoscopy.
At MoleSafe we are also very thorough — all lesions are captured and stored in an electronic medical record so that on future visits we can compare how your moles have changed/evolved over time. If there is one universal truth about melanoma, it is change. The ability to track moles over time enables us to pick up subtle changes that may indicate melanoma. These melanomas might otherwise be overlooked during a routine naked eye evaluation with no historical reference point.
What happens when I arrive?
A comprehensive history will be taken and digital images will be obtained of most of your moles and, in particular, any moles that you or your physician are concerned about. This will entail removing any clothing covering your moles.
Examination of moles on the scalp is difficult and requires the shaving of surrounding hair for a clear image. Please inform us if there are any moles on your scalp of concern. A Skin Surveillance Program consultation does not routinely include a genital examination. However, if there is a lesion of concern in this area please inform us at the time of your examination. It is possible that you will be directed to undertake a clinical examination by a dermatologist if a lesion cannot be imaged clearly.
Who performs the procedure?
All Skin Surveillance Program consultations are performed by MoleSafe’s certified melanographers. These professionals are either RN’s, nurse practitioners or physician assistants and have undertaken an extensive training program in the SSP process. Your images are then encrypted and sent via a secure network to one of our experts for assessment.
How long does it take?
The full Skin Surveillance Program is very thorough and the initial consultation usually takes 60 minutes. Occasionally, an extended visit or second appointment is required where there are a large number of moles to image.
Is it safe? Does it hurt?
The Skin Surveillance Program is non-invasive and does not hurt. In addition, it is also safe for pregnant women.
How will I learn of my results?
A copy of the findings will be sent to your physician if chosen. You will also receive a copy of this report within 10 working days outlining the results, making recommendations on when you should next be assessed and general advice about sun protection and early detection.
What will happen if something suspicious shows up?
Your physician will decide on the appropriate course of action based on our recommendations and organize the treatment as necessary. It is important that you contact your doctor immediately to schedule an appointment if you require.
How often should I have a MoleSafe procedure?
This depends on your level of risk assessed at your first MoleSafe visit. The doctor reviewing your images will recommend in the report when you should have your next consultation. The majority of patients are recommended to have annual MoleSafe examinations. It is this surveillance that allows us to identify melanoma at the earliest possible stage. It is important that in between appointments that you continue to self monitor your skin on a monthly basis.
What will happen to my MoleSafe records if I move out of the area?
The images will continue to be stored in our central database and can be accessed from other MoleSafe clinics as required. This means you can continue to be active in monitoring your moles by going to your nearest MoleSafe office.
How accurate is the SSP?
MoleSafe combines tools that are proven to help detect early skin cancer (total body photography, digital dermoscopy and digital monitoring) with the skills of our experts. Because of its comprehensive screening capabilities, the SSP is the only skin screening program that combines multiple high-resolution images with expert diagnosis to provide you with the most thorough and trusted results.
How much does it cost?
The cost varies depending on what procedure you have. Please call us on 1-877-MOLESAFE (1-877-665-3723) and one of our customer service representatives will talk you through the options. They can also explain what insurance options may be available to you.
Does MoleSafe do mole removals?
No, MoleSafe’s SSP is a skin cancer screening program and therefore does not excise lesions. Should removal be necessary you will be directed back to your physician. MoleSafe’s role is to accurately diagnose skin cancer and therefore aims to minimize any unnecessary excisions of benign lesions.
What happens at a follow-up appointment?
The follow-up procedure is similar to the initial consultation although it generally does not require additional body shot images (Total Body Photography) – only clinical and dermoscopic images of your moles. The greatest benefit about the follow-up appointment is we can now overlay the latest images of your lesions with those captured during your previous visit allowing us to see and identify the most subtle changes. Having a history of your skin enables our specialists to monitor changes over time (changes that may not have been picked up by a naked eye examination) and this helps identify melanoma at an even earlier stage plus helps avoid the unnecessary removal of benign/stable lesions. The unique follow-up consultation provides you with the assurance that we are doing everything possible to identify this potentially deadly form of cancer.
How long does the final patient report take?
Our policy is that all reports are received by the patient within 10 working days. The majority of reports are received well within this timeframe. All diagnoses requiring urgent attention are prioritized and returned to the patient ASAP.
Who do I see when the report says I need to have something done?
In most instances you would see your physician (when you visit MoleSafe you are asked to provide your physicians contact details so that they can also receive a copy of your report). In some instances it may require specialist attention – in this situation it would pay to ask your physician for advice.
Are you open Saturdays or any late nights?
Yes, most MoleSafe facilities are open on Saturdays and evening hours are available. Please call 1-877-MOLESAFE to find out the operating hours of the nearest clinic.