A father who had an enormous chunk of his neck gouged out to remove a deadly melanoma has issued a warning to all sun seekers.
Ryan Glossop, 37, made the potentially life-saving decision to get his skin checked in November last year after a friend tragically died of skin cancer.
What started as a small mole on the back of the Perth father’s neck was diagnosed as cancerous.
Two surgeries later, Mr Glossop’s results were still coming back abnormal.
Ryan Glossop (pictured with his wife Fallon), 37, made the life-changing decision to get his skin checked in November last year after a friend of a friend tragically died of skin cancer
What started as a small mole on the back of the Perth dad’s neck (pictured) ended up being cancerous
His wife Fallon Glassop took to social media to explain her family’s ordeal.
‘The thing is, with any skin cancer, not only do they remove the affected area of skin, but they also take a boundary around it,’ she wrote.
‘Ryan’s boundaries kept coming back abnormal, which was then found to be a skin condition called Nevus Spillus. It’s very rare for it to transition into melanoma, but in his case it did.’
The mother-of-two went on to describe the heartache her husband went through, detailing about 40 neck, back, and lung biopsies and four painful surgeries.
In May this year, the final surgery involved the removal of a large strips of skin from the man’s neck and legs.
‘A large area of skin from his neck and back needed to be taken … Ryan had a skin graft, removing skin from both legs to cover section on his neck and back,’ she said.
The mother-of-two went on to describe the heartache her husband went through after four painful surgeries (pictured: the scar after one of Mr Glossop’s surgeries)
In May this year, the final surgery involved the removal of a large strips of skin from the man’s neck (pictured) and legs
The piece of skin was 8cm wide and 40cm long, Yahoo reported.
Mr Glossop described the ‘scary’ ordeal.
‘Going through that was scary at first, but then once they said “if we can get this skin graft done, we think you’ll be in the clear”, it was more dealing with the fact I’d have fairly significant scars.’
The keen basketballer also admitted he never thought he was at risk because he didn’t have many freckles as a child.
‘Over the last few years it’s started to change, I got more spots and more freckles, but it wasn’t until I went into the mining industry for work that the concept of skin checks was thrown around quite a lot.’
Mr Glossop said he wanted to share his experience to alert people to misconceptions regarding melanoma.
Mr Glossop (pictured) said he wanted to share his experience to alert people to misconceptions regarding melanoma
Mr and Mrs Glossop’s (pictured) two young children, aged eight and five, are undergoing screenings to find put whether their lives will be impacted by the disease
He said most people believe cancerous freckles can be deadly, but are removed fairly easily and only leave a small scar.
Sharing graphic images of his mottled neck on social media was an attempt to show people how catastrophic the condition can be.
His two young children, aged eight and five, are undergoing screenings to find put whether their lives will be impacted by the disease.
‘Have a skin check!’ he urged Facebook users.
This whole experience has been hugely challenging for all of us, but if anything good is to come out of this, it is that we now want to help raise more awareness of Skin Cancer,’ wrote Mrs Glassop.
‘Melanoma accounts for 10 per cent of all skin cancers, which is why it is so important that everyone has regular skin checks.’
WHAT IS MELANOMA?
Melanoma is a type of skin cancer which usually occurs on the parts of the body that have been overexposed to the sun.
Melanoma is the third most common cancer diagnosed in Australia, which along with New Zealand has the world’s highest incidence rate for melanoma.
Melanoma is more commonly diagnosed in men than women.
In 2015, 13,694 new cases of melanoma were diagnosed in Australia, accounting for nearly one in ten cancer diagnoses.
Often melanoma has no symptoms, however, the first sign is generally a change in an existing mole or the appearance of a new spot. These changes can include:
Colour: a mole may change in colour or have different colour shades or become blotchy.
Size: a mole may appear to get bigger.
Shape: a mole may have in irregular border or may increase in height.
Elevation: the mole may develop a raised area itching or bleeding.
Source: Cancer Council