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Wheeling Hospital unveils new cancer screening technology

Updated: Monday, October 28 2013, 09:33 PM EDT

By Jon Rudder

WHEELING, W.Va - Wheeling Hospital announced Monday afternoon that Foto-finder, the latest technology for the prevention, diagnosis and care of skin cancer would now be used at the hospitals Melanoma Screening Center.

The new system can document the whole skin surface, from head to toe, in about 10 minutes using photography as a way to track skin lesions. This improved way of identification will allow Wheeling Hospital to become the first facility in the area to make use of this technology, and better serve its near 1,100 patients.

Using pictures, doctors can get microscopic images of current moles or lesions on the skin, and a full body scan allows suspicious spots to be marked and then observed for changes over time.

"The way it currently is, we basically do skin checks to identify suspicious moles, butthis technology actually helps us to take photographs of those legions and follow them over time," Dr. Rose Hardin said.

The photos provide a side-by-side comparison of baseline and follow-uppictures to more accurately diagnose and observe lesions.

"When you add the computer technology to the human eye in making the clinical diagnosis, that increases our ability to diagnose early melanoma to a much higher level of performance," Dr. Phil Pollack said.

The dermoscope allowdoctors to see even the slightest change, and with increased accuracy, results in less invasive procedures.

"It reduces the number of biopsies that we need to do, and it increases the sensitivity and specificity of the biopsies that we do that they're actually detecting early skin cancers," Hardin said.

Since melanoma is most treatable at its earliest stage, the quicker the diagnosis, the better the outcome.

"Because of the fact that this technology is objective, it increases the sensitivity of finding an actual skin cancer to about 90 percent,"  Hardin said.

According to the American Cancer Society, skin cancer is the most common of all cancers, accounting for nearly half of all cases in the United States. The ACS estimates that there will be more than 76,000 cases of skin cancer reported this year.


Wheeling Hospital unveils new cancer screening technology

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