Dr Pixie V/O: At the clinic, it’s 43 year old Pippita, a woman who fears she is in a spot of bother.
Pippita V/O: I’m hoping that the doctor will tell me if it is cancerous or not. It would be the end of the earth for me; I really don’t know what I would do.
Pippita: I’ve got a mole at the bottom of my back that I’m a bit concerned about.
Dr Dawn: And in what way has it changed?
Pippita: Its gone a bit crusty, my partner said its gone a bit of a different colour as well.
Dr Dawn: Well, look, we ought to have a look.
Dr Dawn: And actually if you’re covered in them can I just get you to slip your top off and have a look at all of them.
Dr Dawn: That’s grand and if you turn yourself around. This big one in the middle here?
Dr Dawn: And it’s that slightly raised thing that’s become new?
Pippita: Yes, its gone a bit harder than the other ones.
Dr Dawn: If it is getting darker, if it is getting bigger, if it’s bleeding or itching, or if it develops other little moles around it…
Dr Dawn: Ok, then for safety’s sake we should just remove it, send it off to the lab and see what we’re dealing with. Do you know I think that’s nicely in the midline there, I think we could take that off quite easily.
Dr Pixie V/O: Don’t think you’re making a mountain out of a mole hill. If you have any of the warning signs its best to get it checked out by your GP. Look out for moles that develop or grow a lot bigger, a change in colour or patchy mix of colouring, uneven or ragged edges, itching, crusty and inflamed or bleeding for no reason.
Dr Dawn: Get your other half to have a good look. If needs be its worth photographing them.
Dr Dawn: And putting a little tape measure underneath as you take the photo so that you know what size they are, ok.
Dr Dawn: It’s normal to have sort of up to 40 and some people, obviously a lot more, like yourself. It tends to run in families sometimes. We also, I’m afraid, get more as we get older.
Pippita: That’s good news.
Dr Pixie V/O: Pippita went to see the specialist who, on second thoughts decided the mole was safe to leave but she did the right thing by coming in to get it checked out.
Consultation: Mole Check-Up
Some of us seem to be completely covered in moles, while others of us have hardly any at all. However, as Dr Dawn Harper explains to a patient from series one of Embarrassing Illnesses, we all get more as we grow older. But Dr Harper also discusses the changes in moles that we should be aware of, and what to do if we are concerned.
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