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Rochester resident warns others of sun burn danger

Bob and Yvonne Andrews are hoping Yvonne's story about her skin cancer will encourage others to protect themselves from the sun.

IVY WISE December 31, 2013 4:34am

Bob and Yvonne Andrews.


Rochester’s Yvonne Andrews is warning others to protect themselves against the sun after recently having her fifth skin cancer cut out in 10 years.

The 75-year-old great-grandmother is still recovering from her latest operation, which involved removing a skin cancer from her nose and under her eye.

‘‘I’ve had four operations on my nose,’’ she said.

‘‘My nose was sore and red all the time and bled a lot.’’

About a month ago, a skin cancer broke out on the side of her nose and a lump formed under her eye.

‘‘It looked like a pimple,’’ she said.

After being referred to a specialist, Mrs Andrews had day surgery at Rochester and District Health Service.

‘‘Hopefully they’ve got it all,’’ she said.

‘‘Some people aren’t that lucky.’’

Mrs Andrews said she was not worried about the test results, but more annoyed that the cancers kept returning.

‘‘I put my faith in the doctors,’’ she said.

‘‘I did ask the doctor ‘is that it, is that the last one?’ but they can never say that.’’

Growing up, Mrs Andrews spent most of her time outside, playing tennis and hockey.

‘‘We weren’t taught to wear a hat and slip, slop, slap,’’ she said.

‘‘I also have fair skin. I don’t know how many times I had a blister on my nose.’’

She urged people to cover up when they went outside, particularly in the summer holidays.

‘‘I am always telling my grandchildren to put a hat on,’’ she said.

‘‘One of them has skin like me, so they have to be very careful.’’

She also urged people who noticed a spot or change on their skin to get it checked out.

‘‘It doesn’t matter how minute it is, get it checked out. It doesn’t cost anything except maybe your time,’’ she said.

‘‘It was great that I could have it done locally in the new theatre. I am very grateful for that.’’

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