Clients and skin care professionals now have another line of defense to help screen for skin cancer. The Mole Mapper app was designed by Sancy Leachman, M.D., Ph.D., dermatology professor at Oregon Health and Science University, and helps to map moles and spots on the body, including melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer.
“We are taking pictures of the body and the moles in those body regions and following them over time to see if they're changing,” said Leachman. “And the idea is that really if you can put this power in the hands of every individual who has a smart phone with a camera, then you're reaching an enormous number of people that way.”
The mapper reminds users to check themselves regularly and to use an object such as a coin to reference the spot when taking photos to see whether the mole size has changed. The app helps create a record to help track each spot and indicates whether there is a change over time.
“The earlier we catch it, the better off that patient is,” explained Leachman. “The later we catch it, the more life-threatening that melanoma is. Period.”