Skin Cancer Clinic

Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in Australia. There are many different cells in the skin and any one of them can turn into cancer.
Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in Australia. There are many different cells in the skin and any one of them can turn into cancer. The term “Skin Cancer” refers to any cell in the skin that is dividing out of control. The main skin cells that turn into cancer are:
Cell TypeSkin Cancer
Basal CellBasal Cell Carcinoma
Squamous CellSquamous Cell Carcinoma

Melanoma is a very aggressive tumour, ie. it grows very rapidly and can spread to other parts of the body very easily.  The key to treating melanoma is to detect it early and excise it.  When found early the 5 year survival is close to 100%! Melanoma can present in many ways, it can be dark,light, raised, flat….. The common history in melanoma is that the lesion is changing.  This includes a change in the size,shape and sensation(tenderness,itchy or bleeding) of the lesion.  If you are suspicous about a lesion then it is best to see your doctor and have it viewed using a dermatoscope.  Even better is to use computerised dermatoscopy.

The main risk factors for melanoma


Blistering sunburn as a child

Frequent sunexposure in the past or present

Fair coloured skin

Previous skin cancer

Family history of melanoma

Basal Cell Carcinoma(BCC) is the most common form of skin cancer.  BCC tends to grow slowly and is much less likely to spread to other areas of the body than melanoma.   BCC often presents as a small nodule that bleeds easily or a flat pink area of scally skin.  It is important to catch this cancer early as it can invade local structures making the surgical excision very disfiguring.  When caught early, BCC can be treated using other modalities apart from surgery.  BCC most commonly occurs on exposed areas of the body but can occur anywhere.

Squamous Cell Carcinoma (SCC) is another common skin cancer.  SCC can develop slowly but can also be VERY aggressive, doubling in size every few weeks.  SCC can have a pre-cursor lesion called an actinic keratosis which presents as a small scally piece of skin most commonly on the face and arms.  Destroying these keratosis before they have a chance to develop in to cancer can prevent the development to SCC.  SCC can present in a number of forms from flat scally areas to tender pink nodules.  Unfortunately, the death rate from SCC is rising making early detection crucial.

Australia has the highest incidents of skin cancer in the world. Early detection improves your chances of successful treatment. It is recommended to have a full skin check once a year, more often if there is already a history of skin cancer. Our skin cancer GPs have special qualifications in detection, biopsy and removal.

Excision fee will differ as it depends on the area excised, the complexity of the excision and the number of excisions.  A single excision would usually attract an out of pocket fee of $100 – $150. The GP will discuss this during your visit.


Skin Cancer check fee is $140 with a medicare rebate of $79.70.

Skin Cancer GP's

Dr. S Athapattu

General Practitioner