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Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in America. In fact, there are more than 5 million diagnosed cases per year.
When your DNA is altered it cannot control the rate in which your skin cells grow, resulting in cancer. Most skin cancers develop from overexposure to UV rays although that is not always the case.
It is important to get a yearly skin examination if you believe you are at risk for skin cancer.
Types of Skin Cancers
Basal Cell Carcinoma – This type of skin cancer is often found on areas of the body that are exposed to UV rays such as your head, neck and arms. Basal cell carcinomas typically appear as white waxy lumps or brown scaly patches. This is the most common form of skin cancer but also very treatable.
Squamous Cell Carcinoma – Commonly found on sun exposed areas as rough and crusty reddish or brown patches, this type of skin cancer is typically caused by years of sun exposure (indoor/outdoor).
Melanoma – Detecting this type of skin cancer early is extremely important due to the fact that it can rapidly spread to other organs. Melanomas can vary in how they look, they may have irregular borders, be asymmetrical, have color that is uneven and are usually larger than the size of a pea.
Merkel Cell Carcinoma – This skin cancer is rare and grows quickly, it can be hard to treat if it spreads beyond your skin. Merkel cell carcinomas will appear as pearly pimple like lumps that can vary in color.
Kaposi’s Sarcoma – Usually appearing as red, purple or brown lesions, Kaposi’s Sarcoma can form on your skin, lymph nodes or other other organs but is usually treatable.
Lymphoma of the Skin – These lesions are usually red or purple in color and often itchy and scaly. This form of skin cancer is very treatable especially in the earlier stages.
Skin Cancer Treatment Options
We understand the diagnosis of skin cancer can be devastating and scary but our team is here to support you through every step of the process. Our providers have the training and experience to help guide you through the best possible treatment course no matter what type of skin cancer you are facing.
These treatments include Cryosurgery, Mohs Surgery, Electrodessication & cutterage, Excisional surgery and Laser surgery.
1 in 5 Americans
Will Develop Skin Cancer by Age 70
Having 5 or More Sunburns
Doubles Your Risk for Melanoma
Skin Cancer Prevention
Most skin cancers are preventable. To protect yourself, follow these skin cancer prevention tips from the Mayo Clinic:
Avoid the sun during the middle of the day. For many people in North America, the sun’s rays are strongest between about 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Schedule outdoor activities for other times of the day, even in winter or when the sky is cloudy.
Wear sunscreen year-round. Sunscreens don’t filter out all harmful UV radiation, especially the radiation that can lead to melanoma. But they play a major role in an overall sun protection program.
- Wear protective clothing. Sunscreens don’t provide complete protection from UV rays. So cover your skin with dark, tightly woven clothing that covers your arms and legs, and a broad-brimmed hat, which provides more protection than a baseball cap or visor
- Avoid tanning beds. Lights used in tanning beds emit UV rays and can increase your risk of skin cancer.
- Be aware of sun-sensitizing medications. Some common prescription and over-the-counter drugs, including antibiotics, can make your skin more sensitive to sunlight.
- Check your skin regularly and report changes to your doctor. Examine your skin often for new skin growths or changes in existing moles, freckles, bumps and birthmarks.