​​Christie Brinkley's Skin Cancer Was Found at Daughter's Dermatologist Appointment: 'Wasn't Even Scheduled for a Checkup'

Brinkley shared that she was accompanying her daughter to a dermatologist appointment when she asked the doctor to look at a spot on her face

<p>Alexander Tamargo/Getty</p> Christie Brinkley.

Alexander Tamargo/Getty

Christie Brinkley.

Christie Brinkley says that she “wasn’t even scheduled for a checkup” when she was diagnosed with skin cancer.

The supermodel told Today hosts Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb that she’d accompanied her daughter to a dermatologist, and while he was using his magnifying glass to examine a “a couple of things that she was worried about, I thought, 'You know, there is that little spot right on the side of my head right here. ... Should I say anything? It's not my appointment.' "

Brinkley, who turned 70 in February, ultimately decided to speak up, "right at the very end” of the appointment, she said.

“As he was putting away his little thing, I said, 'Before you put that away, do you think you could just look at this?'" Brinkley said. "He looked and he goes, 'We've got to do a biopsy immediately.' "

He continued: "'This is something.' Then the biopsy came back. Cancer."

Specifically, it was basal cell carcinoma, as Brinkley wrote in a Instagram post in March when she shared photos following her surgery. 

Related: Andy Roddick Had a Cancerous Tumor Removed from His Lip: 'Put Sunscreen on Your Kids'

“The good news for me is we caught the basal cell Carcinoma early. And I had great Doctors that removed the cancer and stitched me up to perfection like an haute couture Dior," wrote Brinkley.

And as she shared with Today, “They took care of it, and luckily, my hair grows in that direction, but the scar is barely noticeable," she said.

<p>Christie Brinkley/Instagram</p> Christie Brinkley shares the results of her skin cancer surgery.

Christie Brinkley/Instagram

Christie Brinkley shares the results of her skin cancer surgery.

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Basal cell carcinoma is "the most common form of skin cancer and the most frequently occurring form of all cancers," according to the Skin Cancer Foundation.

And as the Mayo Clinic says, it occurs “most often on areas of the skin that are exposed to the sun, such as your head and neck” and is “thought to be caused by long-term exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from sunlight. Avoiding the sun and using sunscreen may help protect against basal cell carcinoma.”

"Repeated sunburns can lead to irreversible DNA damage and immune suppression. These factors can lead to the development of skin cancer," Krista M. Rubin, NP, from the Mass General Cancer Center Melanoma Team told PEOPLE.

Related: Hugh Jackman Wears Nose Bandage as He Undergoes Testing for Basal Cell Carcinoma: 'Please Wear Sunscreen'

<p>Christie Brinkley/Instagram</p> Christie Brinkley.

Christie Brinkley/Instagram

Christie Brinkley.

And skin cancer isn’t the only risk to being in the sun without protection, Rubin tells PEOPLE.

"There are many proven risks of sun exposure without protection, including premature aging, sunburns, scarring, skin discoloration, change in skin texture — to dry, “leathery", or wrinkly — immune system suppression, eye damage, such as the development of cataracts, and of course, skin cancer," Rubin said.

As Brinkley told Guthrie and Kotb, “It’s Skin Cancer Awareness Month, we’re starting summer, and it’s time to remind everybody to really use your sunblock and a hat. And get a checkup.”

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