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Schedule your free skin cancer screening

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A South Philly dermatologist is offering free skin cancer screenings to residents in the hopes of saving lives through early detection.

Through the month of November, Dr. Davida Krupnick of Pennsylvania Dermatology Partners will be screening patients at her office in the Constitution Health Plaza at 1930 S. Broad St., Suite 21.

“Screening is an invaluable tool in helping to diagnose skin cancers in their early stages, allowing for effective treatment,” Krupnick said.

The goal is to educate the population about the importance of early detection and skin health and help guide patients toward proper care in the unfortunate occasion that something does appear abnormal. Laura Leonard, public relations manager at Pennsylvania Dermatology Partners, said appointments are generally quick and painless.

“We schedule the appointments for 15 minutes but sometimes they don’t even take that long,” Leonard said. “It’s a full-body exam, so typically people will get into a gown if they are comfortable for it. The doctor basically just does a visual inspection of moles, freckles and other markings. If she sees anything suspicious, she will recommend a follow up appointment to address whatever it is. No blood is taken, no insurance is being processed, just a visual inspection.”

The screenings are by appointment only and can be made by calling 888-895-3376. Office hours are Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. through 4:30 p.m. Residents will need to bring identification and fill out basic forms in accordance with the American Skin Cancer Association, which does research on the data.

If a health issue is found with a patient, they will have the option of continuing treatment at the facility or can receive recommendations on how to proceed with another doctor.

“No one is locked in to anything,” Leonard said. “It’s really the patient’s responsibility. Once you have that information, you can do what you want with it. If she says there is a mole or two that she’d like to have a biopsy and get tested, it’s up to the patient to schedule it with her. Or if they have their own dermatologist, they can go there for the treatment.”

According to the American Cancer Society, skin cancer is the most common form of cancer, and early detection can make all the difference in many cases. Risk factors for the development of skin cancer include: Sunlight exposure, blistering burns from childhood, indoor tanning beds and having greater than 50 moles. Everyone is at risk regardless of age, sex or skin color.

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Krupnick is a local board-certified dermatologist who completed her dermatologic residency at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia and her internal medicine residency at Columbia University Medical Center in New York. Through her dual training, she obtained a comprehensive knowledge of medical and surgical dermatology. She is a member of the American Academy of Dermatology and has published several papers on dermatology, oncology and women’s health and presented at both regional and national meetings.

“All of our dermatologists are super passionate about preventing skin cancer,” Leonard said. “Some dermatology groups are heavily focused on cosmetics, but for us we are really passionate about finding cancers and helping to cure them.”

Free skin cancer screenings may extend beyond Nov. 30, depending on demand for the services. Call the office at 888-895-3376 to schedule an appointment.

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