The dermatology department offers a variety of outpatient services including diagnosis, treatment and follow up care for skin cancer. We are the referral point in the Great Yarmouth and Waveney area for patients with a suspicion of, or known, skin cancer.
We receive approximately 2,000 two-week wait referrals per year.
The most common types of skin cancer are basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma and malignant melanoma.
If your GP suspects a squamous cell carcinoma or melanoma, you will be referred on a two-week wait referral. A doctor or dermatology specialist nurse will see you, who will take a history and look at the lesion with a dermatoscope.
If there is a suspicion of this type of cancer you will be referred for surgical removal under a local anaesthetic, and sometimes this may be performed on the day. Procedures are performed by doctors and nurses.
Some of these procedures will be performed by a plastic surgeon depending on the location and complexity of the procedure and may require a skin graft or flap repair.
Some basal cell carcinomas depending on type may be treated with cryotherapy (liquid nitrogen) or topical treatments otherwise they will be surgically removed.
The majority of skin cancers are fully excised and will not require any further surgery. Occasionally a further excision may be required or additionally MOHS surgery or radiotherapy may be required. You may have follow up appointments depending on the size and site of the cancer.
Melanomas depending on type may require further management including a further procedure called a wide local excision and may require further lymph node biopsies and scans at either the James Paget or the Norfolk and Norwich hospital. Patients are discussed on an individual basis at a multi-disciplinary team meeting and decisions made regards further management.
Some skin cancers that have a close proximity to the eye will be referred to Ocular plastics surgeons in the Ophthalmology department at the James Paget University Hospital.
When you attend in clinic to discuss your diagnosis, you will be given an information pack relating to the type of skin cancer you have.
A nurse will be present in clinic when you receive your diagnosis. She will be your key worker providing a point of contact for you and your family throughout your journey. The nurse will spend time with you after you have seen the doctor and talk you through the diagnosis, treatment plan, answer questions, provide written information and offer emotional support.
The nurse can give you have an information pack and can refer to the Cancer Care Navigators in the hospital who provide ongoing support. The Navigators can sign post you to support groups post diagnosis and they can be contacted on 01493 452783 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
You can also get more information via the Dermatology section of our leaflet A-Z here.
Other sources of help and support can be found via the related links on this page, including a link to our Cancer Care Navigators.