On May 23, more than 150 hair care professionals and health care providers from across North Carolina came together virtually for a webinar to discuss the topic of scalp melanoma. This event, which was broadcast live from Chapel Hill, was hosted by UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center and UNC Cancer Network.
The webinar was led by UNC Lineberger’s melanoma program co-directors David Ollila, MD, and Nancy Thomas, MD, PhD, as well as hairstylist Andrea Saccone Snyder of Flow Beauty Project in Chapel Hill. The panel began their presentation with an explanation of why hairstylists play a vital role in the early detection of scalp melanoma. Using pre-recorded demonstrations, Snyder instructed stylists on the proper technique for using a blow dryer while visually inspecting the scalp to detect skin abnormalities.
Thomas showed hairstylists what to look for by providing visual slides of various moles, comparing and contrasting the difference between the different types of skin cancer and melanoma. Ollila then outlined the importance of early detection and the harsh realities of why checking your scalp is so important. All presenters encouraged immediate follow up with a health care provider if hairstylists see a changing or suspicious lesion.
“We believe that having an educational program that targets hair care professionals has the potential to increase the early detection of skin cancer on areas that are difficult to check, such as the scalp and neck. Lives can be saved when melanoma is caught early,” said Ollila.
The UNC Cancer Network (UNCCN) partners with many communities across North Carolina to enhance cancer care, support and education for all North Carolinians. Services include participation in virtual multidisciplinary tumor boards, bi-monthly tele-health med/surg and RN/allied health lectures, monthly tele-health community focused "Lunch and Learn" cancer lectures, patient navigation program assistance and the annual "Coping with Cancer Symposium."
This webinar was recorded and can be viewed at www.unccn.org. To learn more about cancer care patient support and survivorship at UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center, visit www.unclineberger.org and www.unccn.org.