Be clear on skin cancer: Bill's story 

Bill Norton had skin cancer. He describes how a freckle-like blemish under his eye turned out to be a melanoma. Because he visited his GP early, the melanoma was found and treated quickly.

Be clear about the signs of skin cancer

Transcript of Be clear on skin cancer: Bill's story

68 YEARS OLD

My name is Bill Norton.

I've had skin cancer.

WHEN DID YOU NOTICE SOMETHING WAS WRONG?

I had a blemish on my left cheek just below my eyelid,

which appeared to look like a freckle.

The shape of that freckle changed slightly

and it started to get marginally darker.

WHAT DID YOU DO?

I decided to go and see my GP.

It would either be nothing to worry about,

but if it was something a bit more serious then it could be treated.

WHAT HAPPENED NEXT?

The mark that was on my cheek, which looked like a freckle,

she wasn't too sure about,

so she decided to take a small portion of that freckle

and send it away for biopsy.

It came back that I had what is termed as a lentigo melanoma.

WHAT TREATMENT FOLLOWED THE DIAGNOSIS?

The mark on my face was removed by a plastic surgeon.

It then went off for further testing.

The results proved that they'd managed to get

all of the lentigo melanoma cancer cells,

so I did not require any further treatment.

WERE YOU AWARE OF HOW SERIOUS SKIN CANCER CAN BE?

My mother had skin cancer.

She had a very similar mark on her cheek.

In her case, she unfortunately did not get it treated.

She left it far too long.

She left it so long that she ended up having major reconstructive surgery.

HOW DID YOU FEEL ABOUT THE DIAGNOSIS?

If you are told that you have cancer,

I think you automatically think that it's going to happen to somebody else

and not to you.

So it really rocked me.

WHAT'S YOUR ADVICE TO OTHER PEOPLE?

You know your body.

You know if you see something that has changed,

something that is there that wasn't there before.

If that is the case, then you need to go and see your GP

and you need to get an early diagnosis,

and your chance of surviving it will be far, far greater.

BE CLEAR ON CANCER

nhs.uk/skincancer

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