Actor Jesse Tyler Ferguson is sharing an important health reminder after having a "bit of skin cancer" removed on Monday.
The former "Modern Family" star, 45, said on Instagram that the cancer was discovered during a routine dermatologist appointment.
"Reminder to stay up to date on your dermatology checks... especially if you're fair like me," Ferguson wrote, alongside a photo of himself in a medical office with white gauze taped under his ear. "I always wind up getting something taken from me, every time I go. Today, they took a bit of skin cancer that they found. Don't worry, I got it early and I'm gonna be just fine."
Ferguson also reminded fans and followers to wear sunscreen, joking that he himself has to use "SPF 1000." He shared a similar message on his Instagram story.
In the comments, many shared well-wishes and thanked Ferguson for the reminder.
"Gotta keep you around forever. Derm appointments once a month!" wrote Justin Mikita, who wed Ferguson in 2013.
"SPF one million!!! And hats- so many hats!" wrote actor Zooey Deschanel.
When one fan wondered if the routine visits were "only for fair skin" and asked if people with darker skin should also make regular appointments, Ferguson was quick to give advice.
"All people should check," he wrote; later in the comments, the fan said that she had made an appointment for this week.
Doctors and other public health experts have emphasized the importance of routine screenings and other medical care, especially for people who may have delayed preventative care during the coronavirus pandemic.
Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer, according to the American Cancer Society, and affects 1 in 5 Americans by age 70. Some forms of the disease, including basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma, are the easiest to treat. Other types, like melanoma, are rarer and more deadly.
Potential symptoms of skin cancer can include moles that look abnormal or appear in a previously clear part of your body, marks that look like pimples that don't go away, or moles on the soles of your feet. Skin cancer can also appear in less obvious ways, like as a vertical dark streak on your fingernails or toenails, or as vision problems that can indicate a melanoma of the eye.
People should conduct regular self-scans of their whole body to look for any symptoms. Make sure to check obvious places, like your face and chest, but also more hard-to-see places like your scalp, between your toes, and the backs of your legs and arms. Dr. Debra Wattenberg, an associate clinical professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, wrote in 2018 that "Every surface of the skin should be checked, even those places where the sun doesn't shine."
- A ASYMMETRY: One half of the mole is unlike the other half.
- B BORDER: Irregular, scalloped or poorly defined border.
- C COLOR: Varied from one area to another.
- D DIAMETER: While melanomas are usually greater than 6 mm, they can be smaller.
- E EVOLVING: A mole or skin lesion that looks different from the rest.