Massage & Bodywork

May/June 2013

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on the lookout Be Clients' First Line of Defense Against Illnesses By John Otrompke raising the red flag When you see something suspicious on a client's skin, how do you bring it up? "I usually phrase it like, 'I see this mole has an irregular shape. have you noticed that?'" says kirsten kayser, a licensed esthetician and massage therapist in Denver, Colorado. "They may say yes or no. Then I say, 'Do 98 massage & bodywork may/june 2013 you have a dermatologist that you like to see?' If not, then I say, 'Because I'm not a physician, I can't make a diagnosis, so I'm going to give you the name of a dermatologist who can check this for you, just to be safe.' I've had clients who were diagnosed with skin cancer after I referred them to a dermatologist. If I hadn't referred them, it could have been life-threatening." It's natural for a client to ask what you think the problem is, but avoid answering that question. "I tell them, 'Usually it's nothing to worry about, but it's better to have it checked out,'" kayser says. "Dermatologists can be booked months in advance, so I let

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