COVID’s Impact on Melanoma

Did you skip your annual skin cancer screening in 2020? Yeah, a lot of people skipped it too.

The American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) has reported a significant drop in skin cancer diagnoses in the United States. From March to May 2020, diagnoses dropped by an average of 46% over the same period in 2019. 

While it would be nice to think that this is a sign that skin cancer cases are on the decline. According to the AAD, the decrease in diagnoses probably isn’t good news.

The results of a survey conducted by the AAD showed the pandemic substantially reduced patient volumes or caused full closings of many US dermatology practices. In 2020, many patients either chose not to go to the dermatologist or their provider was closed.

This trend is worrying many medical professionals. Skipping skin cancer screenings leads to later diagnoses. Later diagnoses lead to lower survival rates. This is a huge concern considering melanoma has a 99% survival rate when detected early. https://www.skincancer.org/skin-cancer-information/skin-cancer-facts/

If you went through 2020 without a proper skin cancer screening, please schedule one very soon. It could literally be a lifesaver.