The Blue Jays commentator opened up about his health after a diagnosis resulting from sun exposure
A sports anchor is detailing his experience with pre-skin cancer treatment in an effort to raise awareness for how he was diagnosed with growths in the first place.
Jamie Campbell, a Toronto Blue Jays sportscaster for Sportsnet, shared an image of himself to X (formerly Twitter) back in October, showing the left side of his face. His red skin, he wrote at the time, was a result of pre-skin cancer treatment.
And now, after his dermatologist told him that sun exposure from his car window played a role in his diagnosis of precancerous skin growths, Campbell, 56, is encouraging others to consider sunscreen.
“I would never, ever have considered putting on sunscreen to drive,” Campbell told TODAY on Monday.
Campbell, who was missing from World Series coverage during the fall as a result of his treatment, was first diagnosed in August with precancerous skin growths by his dermatologist.
Initially seeing his doctor for what turned out to be dead skin on his temple, Campbell told TODAY that his dermatologist then found “tiny red splotches” on his face, which he himself hadn't noticed.
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, the condition actinic keratosis appears on areas of the body that get the most sun, and Campbell's diagnosis was the result of the sun hitting the left side of his face while he was driving, he said. The ADD estimates that more than 40 million Americans are diagnosed with it each year.
Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from celebrity news to compelling human interest stories.
"These precancerous skin growths are common because many people seldom protect their skin from the sun with sunscreen, clothing, and shade," the non-profit shares on its website. "Without sun protection, the sun’s harmful rays can damage your skin. While your body may repair some of this damage, the sun’s rays continue to damage unprotected skin. Over the years, this damage builds up and can cause precancerous changes to your skin."
As TODAY notes, the condition can also lead to squamous cell carcinoma, a type of skin cancer.
After his diagnosis, the sportscaster underwent photodynamic therapy on both sides of his face. He applied a cream called a photosensitizing agent to his face for three hours, as it kills precancerous cells when red light is applied, per TODAY. As he explained, his red light application went on for “seven torturous minutes" and felt like "someone holding a blowtorch to your face."
Following his first treatment on the left side of his face in October, Campbell shared on social media why he wouldn't be part of an annual World Series broadcast, and showed the image of his red face following the treatment. "This is not fun, so please cover up, find shade, and use sunscreen," he wrote.
In November, Campbell — who has previously opened up about living with lymphocytic leukemia — underwent more of the pre-skin cancer treatment on the right side of his face. He shared an additional image of "round two" to X as well.
Now, he makes an effort to apply sunscreen to his face when driving. “The benefit of me doing this is that I have heard from many, many people who have changed their (sunscreen) habits,” Campbell told TODAY, calling the reaction to his posts "wonderful."
For more People news, make sure to sign up for our newsletter!
Read the original article on People.