09 Jun Neal Nurnberg – CEO, MidCon Distribution, Inc.
In October I noticed a mole no larger than the size of a pencil eraser get a little darker on one side. I thought to myself, “I need to get this looked at” because I have had family history of melanoma and am fair skinned. I didn’t make it into the doctor until February.
They did a punch biopsy. The results indicated that the melanoma had already spread beyond the borders of the punch and I would have to go in to have more excised. They had to remove almost 3″ x 1.5″ in a diamond shape. They excised all the way down to the muscle. I had 8 dissolving stitches through the muscle and 27 stitches on the surface. Melanoma progresses over a 3 month period and even another month later I could have had much worse repercussions by procrastinating.
Throughout the follow-ups my dermatologist would take distant pictures and anything he saw he would just punch and biopsy. I have had nearly 10 areas biopsied. I definitely see the need to be cautious but I felt there surely was a better way. So I started researching.
I found many products for dermatological use and most of them were incredibly expensive. I contacted a manufacturer in Finland that made a scope with optics. I was able to secure national distribution rights for the scope. The scope itself houses camera optics. The scope presses on the skin and is LED backlit allowing us to remove all variables. The photos are reproducible every time. The photos are then transferred to the software and archived. 6mos to a year later at their next visit the pictures can be compared side by side and measured or zoomed in on.
Slowly but surely we are getting this out into circulation. A lot of the dermatologists are hesitant at the cost. Most of the doctors want to make a purchase and have the product generate income, usually reimbursement from insurance companies. On the other hand the other percentage of doctors are more concerned about the patient experience and think it is a great product. I am hopeful that this new generation of healthcare is going to be more diagnostic and preventative, which will really benefit us going forward.