Tammy Hembrow has been slammed on Instagram after the fitness influencer shared snaps of herself wearing a bikini in the sun after sharing earlier this month that she had "quite a big chunk" taken out of the back of her leg as a "little freckle" actually turned out to be skin cancer.
The influencer took to social media to share a series of snaps with her bandaged leg clearly visible.
Tammy required 30 stitches after having the melanoma removed, with her followers describing her as "downright dumb" for sharing photos of herself sunbathing.
"You’re another type of thick if you’re sunbathing after just having a melanoma removed," one user wrote.
"OMG, U just had a melanoma removed and r sunbathing (sic)," another shocked follower added.
"So over the promotion of cancer," a third said.
"Why are you sunbathing when you just had a cancer scare? Seems irresponsible and honestly downright dumb," someone else wrote.
Tammy responded to one user, writing, "Was in the sun for 15 mins. It’s also winter here & I don’t go in the sun without sunscreen anymore. Alsooo, I am still very much going to go in the sun, to the beach, to the pool, or even if I just want to read a book for 15 mins in the sun etc. Just always going to wear SPF and not be out in the hottest hours with no protection like I used to.
"People are silly if they think I can never go in the sun in a bikini again..."
Many pointed out that it doesn't matter if it's winter or summer, sunscreen needs to be worn every single day, even if you're inside, as the sun can still cause damage through windows.
Tammy revealed earlier this month that she had put off a number of skin checks because she was "busy" and when she finally went the doctor found the small freckle was actually melanoma.
"This is your sign to go get your skin checked," she said in a TikTok video. "I finally went and there was a new little freckle on the back of my leg."
"When my doctor looked at it, he thought it looked a little bit suss," she added. "I went back this morning and [the doctor] had to take a big chunk out of my leg."
"I’ve got about 30 stitches … And now I have to go back every three months for a full skin check to make sure that it isn’t coming back."
Tammy said that she never expected it to happen to her, "Don’t be stupid like me and think you’re somehow invincible, because you’re not."
Most common cancer
Melanoma is the most common cancer for 20-39-year-olds, the Melanoma Institute of Australia's CEO Matthew Browne told Yahoo News.
"We need to ensure the younger demographic understands the seriousness of melanoma, the seriousness of a disease that can ultimately kill you," he said.
Australia has the highest rates of melanoma in the world, according to the institute, and one person dies every six hours. Mr Browne says it's "very simple" to avoid getting skin cancer and in most cases, it's preventable "through the sun-safe methods of wearing a broad-rim hat, sunscreen, protective clothing, shade and sunglasses".
Skin cancer can be hiding anywhere on the body, with dermatologist Dr Shreya Andric telling Yahoo Lifestyle how important sun protection and skin checks are, adding people are often surprised when she checks their feet, "I like to remind my patients that Bob Marley died from a melanoma under the toenail of his big toe!"
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