I'm a lucky fella, says veteran newsreader Peter Overton

Peter Overton's hospital bed selfie. Photo: Twitter
Peter Overton's hospital bed selfie. Photo: Twitter

Channel Nine newsreader Peter Overton has shared a shocking post-op selfie with a poignant message

The longtime journalist shared a photo from his hospital bed on Twitter after a melanoma near his temple was removed.

Mr Overton, 54, described himself as a "lucky fella" and urged anybody who was considering having their skin checked to act now before it's too late.

"My wonderful dermatologist spotted something unusual on my right temple -melanoma," his tweet read.

"For those thinking about getting their skin checked. Do it. Now."

Australia has one of the highest rates of melanoma in the world and it is the most common cancer affecting 15 to 39-year-old Aussies.

Last year, 1,415 people died from the cancer. Melanoma is the third-most commonly diagnosed cancer in Australia.

Only last month a research paper revealed that almost a quarter of Queenslanders misjudge their risk of developing potentially deadly melanomas.

People at the highest risk the worst at predicting their chances of getting skin cancers, researchers at Brisbane's QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute revealed in their study which encompassed 42,000 people.

"We found almost 24 per cent of respondents underestimated their risk of melanoma by at least two levels," Deputy Director David Whiteman said.

More than 28,500 people correctly identified their skin cancer risk category or were only one category away from the correct level.

Fellow researcher Associate Professor Olsen said no matter how low people think their skin cancer risk is, they should always be sun smart.

"Cover-up, use sunscreen, wear a hat and sunglasses and find shade," she said.

- with AAP