Making their patients skin clear for more than 25 years, Saguaro Dermatology is now offering a new way to treat skin cancer. The northwest side facility is the only one in Tucson offering radiation treatment to skin cancer patients.

Dr. John Haraldsen, owner of Saguaro Dermatology, attended the University of Arizona where he finished with a degree in zoology and then spent the next four years in medical school. Upon completion, Haraldsen spent the next seven years doing internal medicine, a rheumatology fellowship and working at Tucson Dermatology.

In 1986, Haraldsen decided to open his own private office called Saguaro Dermatology that provides general dermatology and minor surgery. This is primarily surgeries and treatment on skin cancer – no cosmetics. The office provides  service though through Saguaro Electrology for patients who want cosmetic treatment.

What makes Saguaro Dermatology is the recent addition, as of December, of a radiation treatment used for skin cancers. It is a non-surgical treatment that is only performed on non-melanocytes cancers. 

“It (the radiation) leaves the anatomy as it was before,” said Haraldsen. “The scarring is virtually minimal.”

This is one of the main reasons that patients like the radiation treatment. Also, patients don’t have any plastic surgery repairs afterwards.

The radiation treatment has been used frequently as the most common skin problems Haraldsen’s patients have are cancerous or sun related skin problems. Because the sun is so strong in Tucson, Haraldsen is never short of patients. He sees around 30 patients a day.

When asked what’s made Saguaro Dermatology stay in business for so many years, Haraldsen gives no praise to himself, but points to his staff of three.

“The three women working here have been here since this office opened,” said Haraldsen. “People like to come in and see the same familiar face behind the reception desk.”

Haraldsen enjoys his job and for more than 30 years he has served the Tucson community with his knowledge of dermatology. Even though he is in his mid-60s, Haraldsen has no plan of retiring soon.

“I’m here to serve the people. Especially with the radiation I found out how appreciative people are when I give them care. I like that.”

(1) comment


I admire Dr. Haraldsen for continuing to serve his community even in his mid 60's. Radiation is another option for skin cancer treatment, but for non-melanocytes cancers only.

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