Friday, September 5, 2008

The Melanoma Research Foundation Introduces "Ask a Nurse" Program

Melanoma, the most serious type of skin cancer, is one of the fastest growing cancers in the U.S., and can strike people of all ages, all races and both sexes. In fact, with a one in 50 lifetime risk of developing melanoma, this year more than 62,000 Americans are expected to be diagnosed with the disease, resulting in an estimated 8,400 deaths. Melanoma is the most common form of cancer for young adults 25- to 29-years-old and the second most common cancer in adolescents and young adults 15- to 29-years-old.

The Melanoma Research Foundation (MRF) recently announced a new resource for those with questions about melanoma. Through the "Ask a Nurse" program, people have free access to an expert for guidance or to ask basic questions about melanoma, the most serious type of skin cancer.

"Although melanoma is the fastest growing cancer in the U.S. and worldwide," said Randy Lomax, chairman of the MRF, "there is still much to be done in terms of public education. The Melanoma Research Foundation is excited to add the 'Ask a Nurse' program to our existing library of resources for melanoma patients and those who care for them. With this service, there is no need for a referral, prescription or appointment; all you need once you go online is an e-mail account."

All questions directed to "Ask a Nurse" - - are answered by Suzanne McGettigan, MSN, CRNP, ANP-BC, AOCN, an oncology nurse practitioner instructor at the Abramson Cancer Center at the University of Pennsylvania. In most cases, McGettigan responds to inquires within 72 hours.

"I am thrilled to be able to share my knowledge and experience directly with those who need it most," said McGettigan. "With more than 62,000 Americans expected to be diagnosed with melanoma this year alone, more people that ever before are looking for credible information about disease."

McGettigan added that while the program does not replace a patient's healthcare team, the MRF can help people find additional information and personalized answers beyond what can typically be found searching the Internet.

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