"missed malignant melanoma"

About: St George's Hospital (Tooting) / Dermatology Wandsworth PCT

(as the patient),

just after Easter I visited my GP (who claims to be a GP with Special Interest in Dermatology and who I think gives advice to other GPs in the practice about skin problems) as I had a dark red blemish on the inside of my right upper arm. The GP looked at this and said it was nothing to worry about, it was a kind of blood blister and would put me on to the minor ops list to shave the blemish off.

I heard nothing more about this anticipated procedure.

3 weeks later the 'blemish' had grown more lumpy and started to bleed so i revisited the GP - who was visibly shocked and told me to attend the emergency dermatology clinic at the hospital the next day. At the clinic the clinicians ( a Dermatologist, CNS and Consultant plastic surgeon) who saw my 'blemish' were very surprised that a GP had missed such a malignant melanoma!

I later found out the GP was not accredited as a GPwSI and am left wondering just how many people are misdiagnosed with a potentially life threatening diagnosis - surely the NHS must ensure that all suspected skin lesions are seen by a Consultant Dermatologist?

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