Examining Your Skin Every Month For Possible Evidence Of Skin Cancer

It's very important for you to self-examine your skin each month. If you're not sure how to go about doing this self-examination or have doubts about how to conduct this examination properly, there are tips that you can use to conduct this process. Read on to learn more about skin cancer treatments. 

Changes in Skin Spots

Many people have freckles, other skin conditions, and moles that are not necessarily signs of cancer. If you see changes in skin spots, see a dermatologist and have your skin professionally examined. If your dermatologist finds that the spots on your skin show asymmetric growth and there are color changes, that could be a sign of skin cancer. Sometimes the skin growth spots also change shape and size, and you may have symptoms of itching in the area of the spot growth.

Two Common Types of Skin Cancer

There are two common types of skin cancer known as squamous cell carcinoma and basal cell carcinoma that you should be aware of. They often show up on your face, neck, scalp, arms, and hands. Be sure to have your dermatologist examine your entire body annually. Once you test positive for skin cancer, there are treatments that your dermatologist will recommend.

Basal Cell Carcinoma Treatments

When your basal carcinoma is located deep into your skin, the dermatologist will go deeper into the skin during your surgery to excise the tumor. After a professional removes the tumor, they will use stitches to close up the wound. If your basal cell carcinoma is found to be aggressive, a specialized procedure known as Mohs surgery will be used. The tumor's edges will be checked before the wound is stitched up to ensure that the cancerous tissue is totally excised.

Basal cell cancer lesions that do not need to be surgically removed will be treated with radiation therapy. Large and problematic tumors are usually treated with oral medications. Once you've undergone treatment for basal cell carcinoma, remember to attend your annual skin cancer examination thereafter, because basal cell carcinoma could return in two years.

Squamous Cell Carcinoma Treatment

Squamous cell carcinoma is caused by chronic long-term sun exposure. This skin cancer is treated with Mohs surgery when it is found in the groin, hands, feet, and neck areas. When this skin cancer is diagnosed as superficial, your dermatologist may use another type of treatment, which is referred to as an electrodesiccation and curettage procedure, to treat this type of cancer. In other parts of your body, an uncomplicated excision is used to remove the skin area that's affected by this type of cancer. The excision area is thereafter closed with stitches.