‘You’re a fool if you don’t do it’: Nine newsreader Peter Overton, 54, offers a stern warning to those who continue to ignore the dangers of the sun – after sharing his skin cancer battle
Nine newsreader Peter Overton has offered a stern warning to those who ignore the dangers of the Australian sun, after he had skin cancer removed from his face.
The 54-year-old appeared on the Today show on Monday and said that people are ‘fools’ if they don’t listen to the warnings of health authorities.
‘You’re a fool if you don’t [wear sunscreen and a hat],’ Peter said, admitting he is sun-smart as adult but wasn’t always as a child.
‘You’re a fool if you don’t do it’: Newsreader Peter Overton has offered a stern warning to those who ignore the dangers of the Australian sun, after he had skin cancer removed from his face
‘As a kid, of course I didn’t [wear sunscreen and a hat] because I don’t think we knew enough about it or I didn’t know enough about it,’ he added.
Turning his attention to his own health following his surgery, Pete said he was still in ‘recovery’ after the melanoma was removed.
‘The feeling is recovering. I’m still not 100 per cent,’ he said.
Sun-smart: The 54-year-old appeared on the Today show on Monday and said that people are ‘fools’ if they don’t listen to the warnings of health authorities
‘The swelling will go down and everything will be good. The stitches come out in a couple of weeks I think,’ he continued.
Peter had a routine skin check two weeks ago when a dermatologist diagnosed a melanoma on his face. He said being ‘vigilant’ was important.
‘We’ve got to be vigilant. I am with my skin. I’m very fair-skinned, I’ve had a lot of moles chopped out of me over the years,’ he said.
On the mend: Peter has been spreading the message of skin cancer and melanoma awareness, and even showed off his scars on Nine News on Sunday night
He said his dermatologist spotted the mole, he had pathology results the following day, which was followed by surgery a week later.
Peter has been spreading the message of skin cancer and melanoma awareness, and even showed off his scars on Nine News on Sunday night.
Melanoma is the third most commonly diagnosed cancer in Australia.
Recovery: Peter also shared this image to Twitter of his bandaged head following his operation to remove the cancer
Peter spoke on 2GB radio on Wednesday afternoon to provide an update on his recovery.
‘I’m a little battered and bruised and full of stitches,’ he said.
‘I look like a sewing machine but I had the fine hand of a fine surgeon to put me back together. It’s been a hell of a week.’
Family: Peter is married to fellow journalist Jessica Rowe. The couple share two daughters: Allegra, 12, and Giselle, 10. The family is pictured on June 10, 2017, in Sydney
It’s not the first cancer scare for the TV presenter, who felt run-down and noticed strange lumps all over his body in September 2017.
After meeting with his doctor, Peter was warned he could have lymphoma, a cancer of the blood.
He described having sleepless nights as he anxiously waited to hear the results while his wife, Jessica Rowe, was ‘sick to her stomach’.
After several painful days, he was given the news he was desperately hoping for: it wasn’t cancer but instead a virus.
What are some warning signs for melanomas?
The first five letters of the alphabet are a guide to help you recognise the warning signs of melanoma.
A is for Asymmetry. Most melanomas are asymmetrical. If you draw a line through the middle of the lesion, the two halves don’t match, so it looks different from a round to oval and symmetrical common mole.
B is for Border. Melanoma borders tend to be uneven and may have scalloped or notched edges, while common moles tend to have smoother, more even borders.
C is for Colour. Multiple colours are a warning sign. While benign moles are usually a single shade of brown, a melanoma may have different shades of brown, tan or black. As it grows, the colours red, white or blue may also appear.
D is for Diameter or Dark. While it’s ideal to detect a melanoma when it is small, it’s a warning sign if a lesion is the size of a pencil eraser (about 6 mm, or ¼ inch in diameter) or larger. Some experts say it is also important to look for any lesion, no matter what size, that is darker than others. Rare, amelanotic melanomas are colourless.
E is for Evolving. Any change in size, shape, colour or elevation of a spot on your skin, or any new symptom in it, such as bleeding, itching or crusting, may be a warning sign of melanoma.