Skin cancers are the most common cancer in New Zealand.
Most skin cancers can be fully cured with a simple procedure provided they are identified early.
What causes skin cancer?
Skin cancer may be related to genetics and sunlight exposure over the years. New Zealand has the highest rates of melanoma globally, due to the high levels of UV light and our active outdoor lifestyles. Over 80,000 skin cancers are treated each year in New Zealand.
Different types of skin cancers have different appearances. Early diagnosis and treatment is usually fully curative. It is important that treatment isn't delayed as this may allow it to grow or spread.
How can we protect our skin?
Protect: sunscreen, cover, seek shade, avoid burning
Check: Self-check your moles and see a specialist for any changing or growing moles or moles with suspicious features
Check again: See a dermatologist regularly (sooner if you notice a mole changing) for examination and treatment of any concerning lesions
How we can help?
Our doctors are experienced at identifying lesions which have features of pre-cancerous or cancerous activity.
They use a specialised magnification device (dermatoscope) which uses polarised light to examine cellular patterns and look for irregularities.
Suspicious lesions can be biopsied if in doubt or fully treated using a non-surgical treatment or surgical excision procedure.