Image: ABC. By Emma Wynne.
There are a number of smartphone apps that promise to track and help detect skin cancers, but experts warn they should not replace a visit to the doctor for a check-up.
Terry Slevin, director of education and research at the Cancer Council of Western Australia, told 720 ABC Perth there were at least 26 smartphone apps on the market.
He said they might be a useful prompt to remind people to check their skin and go to the doctor or to keep photographic records of moles they were worried about — but that is all.
“There really isn’t sufficient and reliable evidence to say that these things are a proven and reliable way of improving early detection of skin cancer,” he said.
“The accuracy of the diagnosis is the core of the issue. So far no-one has it perfectly right.
“Even specialist dermatologists using the naked eye or a dermatoscope don’t always pick a skin cancer.
“An app is not going to cut off a bit of skin and send it to a pathologist.”