Free Skin Cancer Screening at Nine St. Louis Area Locations

St. Louis Dermatological Society, American Academy of Dermatology, and American Cancer Society team up against most common cancer

Nine area hospitals and medical centers will host this year’s annual free skin cancer screening on Saturday, May 11. Groups including the St. Louis Dermatological Society, American Academy of Dermatology, and American Cancer Society are coordinating the event, which aims to screen more than 1,000 area residents for the single most common form of cancer: skin cancer.

The program includes a free, total body skin examination in a private exam room. Those needing treatment will be referred to a dermatologist if they do not already have one. The screening only takes about five minutes with the doctor, and an estimated 20 minutes total at the screening center. Twenty minutes that could be life-saving by detecting a cancer at its earliest, most treatable stage.

“This is a great opportunity for the dermatologists involved to provide a community service for patients who otherwise would not have their skin examined,” said Dr. Lee Portnoff, Dermatologic Surgeon at Missouri Baptist Medical Center and coordinator of the annual program. “Since the program’s inception in St. Louis in 1985, we’ve detected several thousand skin cancers, some of which might have been fatal had they not been found at an early stage.”

Facilities hosting free screenings include Missouri Baptist Medical Center, St. Anthony’s Medical Center’s Cancer Care Center, Mercy Hospital St. Louis, Barnes-Jewish West County Hospital’s Siteman Cancer Center, Saint Louis University Hospital Des Peres, Saint Louis University Anheuser Busch Institute, St. Luke’s Hospital, St. Clare Health Center, and Barnes-Jewish St. Peters Hospital.

Appointments fill quickly, but can still be made by calling the following facilities:

St. Anthony’s Medical Center: Cancer Care Center
9:00-1:00, Call 314-ANTHONY / 314-268-4669

Mercy Hospital St. Louis
9:00-12:00, Call 314-251-6400

Barnes-Jewish West County Hospital: Siteman Cancer Center
9:00-1:00, Walk-ins only, First come, first served

SLUCare Des Peres: Department of Dermatology
8:00-12:00, Call 314-977-4440

SLUCare Anheuser Busch Institute: Department of Dermatology
8:00-12:00, Call 314-977-4440

St. Luke’s Hospital
8:00-12:00, Register online at http://www.stlukes-stl.com or call 314-542-4848

St. Clare Health Center
8:00-12:00, Call 636-755-3034

Skin cancer is the most common of all cancers. Every year more than one million cases of basal cell or squamous cell cancers occur. Most, but not all, of these forms of skin cancer are highly curable. Nationwide this American Academy of Dermatology program has screened over 2.1 million people and detected more than 206,500 suspicious lesions, including more than 23,500 suspected melanomas.

Monthly self-skin checks are also important. People should be familiar with their pattern of moles, blemishes, freckles and other marks on their skin to notice any changes. Have a doctor look at any moles or spots on the skin that are changing in size, shape or color. Be sure to promptly point out any unusual sore, lump, blemish, marking, or change in the way the skin looks or feels.

For more information on skin cancer, contact the American Cancer Society at 800-227-2345 or visit cancer.org.

Self reflection helps St. Louis woman better lifestyle, encourage community to help find what causes & prevents cancer

It’s never too late to make a change- is just one of Michelle Nischbach’s mottos.  For Michelle, staying fit and trim came naturally to her most of her life.  She was active, athletic, and participated in many sports when she was younger.  However, as a busy career woman, married and a mother of 2, she took a real hard look in the mirror one day and didn’t like what she saw.

Michelle Nischbach

Michelle Nischbach

“Something needed to be done,” said Michelle.  “I was very diligent.  I lost 25-30 pounds. I had to just knock it right off.”   Michelle has become a runner, just completing her third half marathon, and manages her weight to appropriate standards at all times.  “I maintain a very healthy balance of eating right and exercising.”

What prompted Michelle’s lifestyle change was the weight gain, but more importantly, she realized she wasn’t getting any younger.  She also realized she needed to be doing everything she could to avoid a diagnosis of cancer or another disease.   “No one is free from a cancer diagnosis- but you can reduce the odds if you do the right things.”

When her employer, UMB Bank, announced participation in the American Cancer Society’s Cancer Prevention Study- 3 (CPS-3), it caught Michelle’s attention.  “Unfortunately, you encounter people every day that have been negativity impacted by cancer,” said Michelle.   “And what is being asked of a participant in the study is very small, but can have a huge impact….it’s just about being and staying committed.”

This historic study has the potential to change the face of cancer for thousands and thousands of lives, here in St. Louis and nationwide.  Men and women between the ages of 30-65 who have never been diagnosed with cancer are needed to participate in the study.  The opportunity for local residents to enroll will take place at various locations across St. Louis from April 23 to May 1.  To learn more or to sign up, visit cancerstudymo.org.

For more than 60 years, the American Cancer Society has been conducting large-scale, nationwide population studies to examine the causes of cancer and how it can be prevented.  The many results from these studies have had a tremendous impact on public health. For example,  in  2006, guidelines on nutrition and physical activity for cancer prevention were published which encourage individuals to maintain a healthy weight throughout life, adopt a physically active lifestyle, choose a healthy diet with more plant sources, and limit the consumption of alcohol beverages.  The American Cancer Society has since validated the effectiveness of these guidelines to see if following them really does lower risk of dying from cancer and other diseases.

Michelle’s words of encouragement “It’s never too late to make a lifestyle change. It doesn’t have to be extreme, like running marathons.  Anyone can do it- you just gotta get moving!”

St. Louis’ Top Employers Partner with American Cancer Society on National Cancer Prevention Study

Company Champions at the CPS-3 press conference on February 19, 2013.

Company Champions at the CPS-3 press conference on February 19, 2013.

Residents in the St. Louis area have an unprecedented opportunity to participate in a historic study that has the potential to change the face of cancer for future generations. Men and women between the ages of 30 and 65 who have never been diagnosed with cancer are needed to participate in the American Cancer Society’s Cancer Prevention Study-3 (CPS-3). CPS-3 will enroll a diverse population of 300,000 people across the United States and Puerto Rico. The opportunity for local residents to enroll in CPS-3 is being made possible in partnership with some of St. Louis’ top employers. UMB Bank, Edward Jones, Centene Corporation, Maritz Holding, Inc., KPMG, Monsanto, and Siteman Cancer Center will be hosting CPS-3 enrollment sites from April 23 – May 2, 2013. Eligibility and enrollment details can be found at cancerstudymo.org.

CPS-3 will help researchers better understand the lifestyle, environmental, and genetic factors that cause or prevent cancer. “Currently, there are no other studies of this magnitude in the US that enable researchers to look at various racial and ethnic populations and cancer risk,” stated Mike Dany, Executive Vice President for the American Cancer Society. “We commend our corporate and health care partners for taking the lead to offer their sites for participants to enroll in this critically important study.”

Enrollment in the study involves two steps. After scheduling an appointment, individuals will be asked to complete a comprehensive survey online that asks for information on lifestyle, behavioral, and other factors related to their health. Step two involves an in-person enrollment process which takes approximately 20-30 minutes and includes measuring waist circumference and collecting a small blood sample from participants. Upon completion of this process, the Society will send periodic follow-up surveys every few years to individuals to update their information and annual newsletters with study updates and results.

Researchers will use the data from CPS-3 to build on evidence from a series of American Cancer Society studies that began in the 1950s that collectively have involved millions of volunteer participants. The Hammond-Horn Study and previous Cancer Prevention Studies (CPS-I, and CPS-II) have played a major role in understanding cancer prevention and risk, and have contributed significantly to the scientific basis and development of public health guidelines and recommendations. Those studies confirmed the link between cigarette smoking and lung cancer, demonstrated the link between larger waist size and increased death rates from cancer and other causes, and showed the considerable impact of air pollution on heart and lung conditions. The current study, CPS-II, began in 1982 and is still ongoing. But changes in lifestyle and in the understanding of cancer in the more than two decades since its launch make it important to begin this new study. The voluntary, long-term commitment by CPS-3 participants is what will produce benefits for decades to come.

Go to cancerstudymo.org to enroll or call 888-604-5888. For more information or to learn how to become involved with CPS-3, visit cancer.org/cps3, email cps3@cancer.org, or call toll-free 1-888-604-5888.

Dr. Jeff Michalski from Siteman Cancer Center speaking at the CPS-3 press conference.

Dr. Jeff Michalski from Siteman Cancer Center speaking at the CPS-3 press conference.

UMB Bank Chairman & CEO Tom Chulick speaks at the CPS-3 press conference.

UMB Bank Chairman & CEO Tom Chulick speaks at the CPS-3 press conference.

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