Frequently Asked Questions
Skin Check Basics
When should I have a skin check?
Good question! Full body skin checks should be done annually depending on your skin type (see below). Think of it as your skin health warrant of fitness.
If you’re worried about a mole or spot it’s best to be checked out as soon as possible. Common warning signs are any spots that have changed colour, size, shape, become itchy or started bleeding. Those need to be checked right away.
After your initial skin check our specialists will advise how often you should return, for your best peace of mind.
Early detection is the best way to stay free of skin cancer for life.
WHAT IS MY RISK OF GETTING SKIN CANCER?
Everybody needs to have their own assessment.
Do you have fairer skin? Did you tan a lot, or get sunburned a lot as a kid? Those things can mean you’re at greater risk. Remember that Kiwis have the highest rate of melanoma in the world! But with regular checks, you’re probably going to be good for life.
It’s important to have an initial mole check, then visit us regularly (we’ll give our recommendation) to detect any changes. Anything suspicious we can usually treat right away.
Can I check my skin myself?
Great idea! At least every 3 months you should examine your own skin to look for the early signs of skin cancer. If you notice a spot is new, looks different, is changing, sore, bleeding or itchy, come and see us for a spot check.
At any rate, you should have a professional mole check so if anything ever develops, it can be easily spotted.
What is a mole CHECK?
It depends on the clinic – but at NZ Skin Health it’s a head-to-toe full-body visual assessment. Then we use specialised equipment to image and document your skin, in particular any spots of interest. This information is stored on our mole check software (DermEngine), which our team uses for detection and diagnosis. Images are saved onto a digital body diagram which lets us monitor and track changes, and also pick up on any new spots.
How should I prepare for my examination?
You don’t really need to do anything – just walk in!
We recommend you wear something comfortable, and separate top and bottom clothing. You’ll be asked to undress to your underwear only. And don’t worry, we’ll provide you with a large towel to cover up with.
We have male and female specialists so you don’t need to feel awkward.
Note that we usually won’t check groin, breast, or buttocks, nor your scalp, except when it’s exposed. You should let us know if you have any moles or spots in these areas, but otherwise, you won’t need to expose yourself too much!
Please note that make-up or moisturiser can affect the process.
Do I have to get naked?
As above, not usually. But if you do, e.g. you have a spot in a personal area and want us to check, we have both female and male medical staff available so you won’t feel awkward or uncomfortable.
Is any treatment given during the examination?
Treatments such as cryotherapy are very easy and not too uncomfortable, and can quickly deal to spot which have the potential to become cancerous later. Age-spots and sun-spots may also be treated, “on the spot” so to speak.
If surgical removal is required, we’ll book you in with one of our skin cancer specialists for the soonest possible time.
If you think you may require treatment, or have any lesions you’d like treated for cosmetic purposes, let us know at the time of your booking.
Does the examination hurt?
There’s no pain with the examination. However, cryotherapy (used to treat pre-cancerous or benign unwanted lesions) can cause a little discomfort, but most people barely notice. No, it doesn’t hurt.
Is the examination safe?
Yes. It’s non-invasive, no x-rays, purely vision. It’s safe for adults and even children, it’s also fine to have during pregnancy.
INSURANCE & REFERRALS
Am I covered by health insurance?
You might be. We are aligned with most major insurers, so if your policy includes skin consultations and procedures, in most cases we can work with them. Talk to us to find out for sure.
Do I need a GP referral?
No. You can just book with us and don’t need to ask your doctor.
We’re happy to send a report to your GP on request, it won’t cost anything. If your doctor has recommended you see a skin specialist, we’re happy to help.
Will this go on my medical record?
As above, we can send a report to your GP but only if you request it. We do access your health details such as NHI number and address for accuracy.
PRICE & PAYMENT
How much is a skin check vs a mole check?
Great question. A skin check is usually specific to a spot or lesion of concern, and can range in price from free (first time customer, one spot) to $200 for a consultation including 3+ lesions.
A mole check is a fully body check and imaging, which we consult for your next visit, usually annually. It is more comprehensive and part of your ongoing monitoring. Our price is normally $269 for an individual adult.
You can check our full range of appointment options, treatments and prices.
How does your membership plan work?
Our membership plan lets you make affordable monthly payments. It covers your annual or 6 monthly check, some treatments and procedures, and gives you a discount on other treatments, depending on the plan you choose.
See your membership page for details, you can sign up on the spot!
Can I buy someone else a consultation?
That’s a great idea and yes you can. Just drop us a line.
What is the HealthNow Payment Method?
You can now use HealthNow’s Buy Now Pay Later solution as a payment method for our services. It gives you the opportunity to spread the cost over a period of 1-6 weeks in equal instalments.
All transactions with HealthNow are interest-free and there is no cost associated when you sign up.
INTERPRETER / TRANSLATION
Do you offer an interpreter or a translation service?
Yes. Please let us know and we can arrange one for you prior to your appointment.