An incredible fan potentially saved Rio Olympics gold medallist’s life

The Australian swimmer Mack Horton avoided a skin cancer thanks to the careful observation of an eagle-eyed television viewer who made a diagnostic and tried to warn the athlete.

Mack Horton won gold in the 400-meter freestyle competition at the Rio Olympics in August 2016. This performance honors the start of a really good career for an athlete who is only in his twenties.

However, during the competition a fan started to worry because of the evolution of a mole on the swimmer’s chest. He then tried his best to contact the medical staff of the Australian team to convince them on the importance to have this mole checked as soon as possible by a dermatologist. The anonymous fan did eventually point out the worrying evolution of the mole between 2012 and 2016.

His advice was quickly followed by the medical staff and the mole was removed.  This potentially saved the swimmer’s life who posted a picture on Instagram shortly after the removal to thank his fan.


Australia is one of the countries where incidence of skin cancer is one of the highest in the world and about two in three Australians will be diagnosed with skin cancer by the time they are 70. If you don’t diagnose and treat it on time, melanoma is the type of cancer which represent the highest risk of death. Problems can be avoided simply by carefully observing your own moles and have them check regularly by a dermatologist (especially if there is anything wrong or if you have any doubt).