App allows patients to monitor skin lesions

App allows patients to monitor skin lesions

A new smartphone application provides patients with reminders to monitor skin lesions or suspicious moles over time.

UMSkinCheck was developed at the University of Michigan Health System and allows users to create photographic baselines of their skin. It also provides step-by-step instructions for performing a self-exam.

The app guides users through a series of 23 photos, covering the body from head to toe, reports. It then stores any photographs of suspicious lesions for later comparisons, which the app will remind the user to repeat. Photos can be shared with the user’s dermatologist. The app also includes a way for users to calculate their personal skin cancer risk.

Although regular skin checks can help to detect melanoma in its earliest stages, whole body photography requires a professional photographer and is not always covered by insurance, Michael Sabel, M.D., associate professor of surgery and lead physician involved in developing the app, told Newswise.

“Now that many people have digital cameras on their phones, it’s more feasible to do this at home,” he says.

The app is designed for iPhone and iPad and is available to download on iTunes.

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