Melanoma survivor speaks - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Melanoma survivor speaks

By Karen Cohilas - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) – After a winter of bitter cold temperatures and lots of rain, most of us are happy to experience the plentiful sunshine we've had lately. But caution shouldn't be thrown to the wind when you walk outside. Make sure to protect your skin.

If not, you could get sun damage, even skin cancer.

Brad Haire loves being outside, and always has. But as he spent time in the sun, the sun did damage to his body. Haire said, "I had noticed a mark on my stomach and the mole was starting to turn kind of dark, irregular, it was kind of ugly."

For a while, he just watched it, but finally decided to have a doctor check it out.

"It never crossed my mind I could have gotten skin cancer, but it should have. I spent most of my childhood without a shirt on, running around Worth County getting repeatedly burned and I'm fair complected and blue eyed. I have all the indications that run the risk of getting skin cancer," he said.

And that's what he got. That tiny mole, about the size of a pencil eraser, was melanoma. It's since been removed, but Brad doesn't want to take any risks of getting it again. "I've always been an outdoors person and I still am," said Haire, "but I just take precautions now by wearing a hat, wearing protective clothing and wearing sunscreen for sure."

Dermatologist Dr. Stuart Goldsmith says Haire is a great example to others. He said, "This time of year, go outside, do healthy things, do fun things, but just be careful."

Cover your skin and you will lower the risk of skin cancer. "Only the patient can really prevent him or herself from dying from melanoma," said Goldsmith.

And if you see something that looks strange, have a doctor check it out. Dr. Goldsmith said, "Any physician would rather tell a patient it looks fine, nothing to worry about, than for somebody to come in too late."

Haire beat the clock, and hopefully, beat the cancer. Haire said, "You don't think of yourself much as a cancer survivor, but cancer dodger." Dodging melanoma, and from now on, dodging some of the sun's rays that could damage his skin.

While white Americans are twenty times more likely to get melanoma than any other race, Hispanics and African Americans should also follow those precautions.

Here are some tips to remember when it comes to what to look for on your skin:  Asymmetrical moles or freckles should be brought to the attention to your doctor. If border is irregular, it is darker than other moles or spots or different than others, get it checked out.

 

©2010 WALB News. All rights reserved.   Feedback

  • More WALB News10 HeadlinesMore News HeadlinesMore>>

  • Love in the park

    Love in the park

    Saturday, March 25 2017 6:15 PM EDT2017-03-25 22:15:19 GMT
    Avalon Park was full of people, children and good food (Source: WALB)Avalon Park was full of people, children and good food (Source: WALB)

    A neighborhood came together to get Albany children out of the house to play. Folks who live in Avalon Park organized an event for the children in the area to enjoy the weather and being outdoors.

    More >>

    A neighborhood came together to get Albany children out of the house to play. Folks who live in Avalon Park organized an event for the children in the area to enjoy the weather and being outdoors.

    More >>
  • Residents are 'Peanut Proud' in Blakely

    Residents are 'Peanut Proud' in Blakely

    Saturday, March 25 2017 6:12 PM EDT2017-03-25 22:12:03 GMT
    The 9th annual Peanut Festival took place on Saturday, March 25 (Source: WALB)The 9th annual Peanut Festival took place on Saturday, March 25 (Source: WALB)

    Early County is proud of it's peanut history.  The annual Peanut Proud festival is more than just a party. It honors the peanut industry, and what it means to the community.

    More >>

    Early County is proud of it's peanut history.  The annual Peanut Proud festival is more than just a party. It honors the peanut industry, and what it means to the community.

    More >>
  • Family Day must go on for the Museum of Art

    Family Day must go on for the Museum of Art

    Saturday, March 25 2017 5:56 PM EDT2017-03-25 21:56:18 GMT
    Family Day must still go on (Source: WALB)Family Day must still go on (Source: WALB)

    The Albany Museum of Art is still recovering from storm damage but that didn't stop them from holding their family fun day. 

    More >>

    The Albany Museum of Art is still recovering from storm damage but that didn't stop them from holding their family fun day. 

    More >>
Powered by Frankly