This is good advice. Given that I grew up in Africa I go annually to the deramtologist- I have so many blemishes even my spots have spots. The dermatologist often jokes "Holy Moley". Of course socialized medicine in Canada means there is no financial implication to me.
@Antedelivian: Other good advice is to have a colonoscopy...
Yup -- I had my first one about 3 years ago -- the worst part was all the stuff you have to drink the night before t oclear your insides out. The next morning the doctor started off by commenting on that and saying "The worst is behind you" ... I was too weak to hit him LOL
@Max : Probably wise to say that in England all us old ones get a Poo sample test each year to screen for early bowel cancer. All done via the postal service.
And for men get the prostate tested, I am on a six monthly monitoring of two tiny tumours, the great probability is that I will die with the varmints not from them. But the six monthly blood test keeps an eye on their activity, giving plenty of time to decide on any futher actions to be taken, should they decide to get too active.
I worked removing asbestos one summer in High School I've also repaired brakes on cars as an after school job -- so a check of the lungs is also important for me -- This and having done Inkjet printer development where the oil based type inks can cause lung issues makes this doubly important -- Colon cancer screening is doubly important for many types of electronics work as well as the Colon is where some of these items are excreted -- to cut one's risk of colon cancer one should take Magnesium in an absorbable form (Mixed Nuts are an excellent source of healthy absorbable minerals, and cholesterol fighting good fats for example)
@Max -- "Nobody should lay their hands on my Nuts" -- Testicular cancer is another item that is important to screen for -- but the screening can be a bit painful if done by a female medical professional with long fingernails
I have been to Toronto twice and enjoyed it. Also Ottawa, Montreal, Quebec, Victoria, and Vancouver.
If you are into scenery, might I suggest the Canadian Rockies and the Badlands (can be done in one trip). Also out east in Nova Scotia and the Gaspe Peninsula. I believe Newfoundland is well worth a visit (haven't made it there yet).
@antedeluvian I have also been to Toronto a couple of times and liked it. But Canadians (or at least Torontians) obviously pay as little attention to the idiots they elect as Aussies do. They say you get the politicians you deserve....and if you don't look closely at the guys first you are stuck with them.....
@KarlS01 - this seems to be a universal problem. I reckon there should be referendums on any issue (a) over a certain amount of $ (b) affecting over a certain number of people (c) if there is a petition with over a certain number of signatures. Cumbersome, yes, but how else do you keep the mongrels honest? But they'd never agree to something like this, it would take away their gravy train.....
How did we get onto politics from Dermatologists??? :-)
@antedeluvian: "Other good advice is to have a colonoscopy- Dave Barry did a great piece on this."
Yes, Dave Barry has certainly nailed down the MoviPrep experience, although the taste seems better than the phosphate laxatives of 10 years ago. I'm looking forward to my next colonoscopy; it won't be for another 10 years, so if I'm still around then I'll be doing good!
@Max: Thanks. I was just planning visit to my family physician. I too suddenly observed enlarged drak brown skin under my arm. I was wondering what is that. I should soon first approach my family doctor for next action.
@_hm: yes. Do not delay. One route is to go to your family doctor who may then refer you to a specialist -- or (at least where I live) you can call a dermatologist directly. One thing is that dermatologists are often booked up and you may have to wait a long time to get an appointment -- if your doctor refers you to a specialist and your doctor thinks it's important enough, then he/she can get you a priority booking and speed things up.
The main thing is to get the ball rolling as soon as you can. It may well be nothing important, but it may also be something that is best treated right away. Please let me know how you get on (Max.firstname.lastname@example.org)
My family doctor retired about 18 months ago. He referred me to a much younger doctor at another practice who left town less than year later. I was then transferred to another doctor in the practice who also left for another postion, though still local. So now I'm on my third doctor in that practice, but have yet to meet him.
I did have physicals with the first two doctors before they left.
@Charles: ...we need to take time to visit as many medical professionals as possible.
Hmmm -- I'm not sure if you mean this or if you are being a tad sarcastic (LOL). I think you can have too much of a good thing -- some people spend their lives visiting different doctors for no good reason -- but I certainly think it's well worth gertting a regular checkup :-)
@Max The Magnificent: "Those aren't liver spots; they're [some incredibly complicated name that ultimately translated into dry skin]."
I know what your're going through, Max. Was it Actinic Keratosis, perhaps? That's what sent me to a dermatologist, who looked me over (allover) and said she wanted a sample of two suspicious nevi and the thing on my earlobe before she burned off the AK with liquid nitrogen.
That thing on my earlobe, which looked like an oversize freckle, turned out to be Melanoma, in situ, Stage 0, which meant it was only in that one spot and hadn't had time to spread. Believe me, they couldn't get it off of me fast enough to suit me, but it was a week-and-a-half before the surgeon had an available appointment.
Now every 6 months I pay $40 to have two women look at my almost naked body (they wouldn't do that for free even in Canada!), but if they want to they get to stick me with needles and carve out chunks of my body, or burn parts of my skin off with liquid nitrogen. I've had all three of the lesions you mentioned, all caught in time.
Bottom line: I heartily endorse Max's Maxim: Don't Delay -- Visit Your Dermatologist Today!
If you want to you can check out the gory details of my personal journey with Melanoma on the earlobe and a Pedicle Flap (plastic surgery). Sorry, but I never got a photo of The Mother Of All Keloids that now hides behind my ear.