Minneapolis-St. Paul- Eagan—July 7, 2015. It was just a routine follow up acne appointment. A father patiently read a magazine in the exam room as Dr. Crutchfield examined his son’s progress. After Dr. Crutchfield reviewed the treatment plan for the boy, he began to exit the room. As he was leaving, he glanced back momentarily toward the boy’s father. Out of the corner of his eye, Dr. Crutchfield noticed a suspicious-looking, dark mole on the father’s arm.
Now outside the room, Dr. Crutchfield paused. His instinct led him to return to the room and speak with the boy’s father about the suspicious mole. Dr. Crutchfield expressed his concern about the mole and asked if he may investigate further. The father responded that he and the boy were running late for work and school, and in any case, he had no personal health insurance. Dr. Crutchfield assured the father, “It will take less than 5 minutes and I won’t charge you a penny.” Dr. Crutchfield’s concern and offer convinced the man to permit a biopsy of the suspicious mole.
Incredibly, the pathology report confirmed Dr. Crutchfield’s suspicion: Melanoma. Clinic personnel immediately contacted the boy’s father, notified him of the diagnosis, and scheduled a complete and successful removal of the malignant Melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer. Had the lesion gone unnoticed, it could have been life-ending for the father.
This man was in the right place at the right time. Many people do not realize their health — their life – is too important to rely on remarkable scenarios to catch dangerous health conditions. If detected early, Melanoma is almost 100% curable. It’s important to have routine skin cancer screenings by a board-certified dermatologist and to receive proper education on how to perform a self-examination, what to look for, and how to identify warning signs. And if Dr. Crutchfield offers to examine a suspicious lesion on your arm, let him take a look!