A – Asymmetry. Look for irregularly shaped moles. Lesions that cannot be split in half evenly should be considered suspicious.
B – Border irregularity. Look for sharp, jagged or notched borders.
C – Color. Look for uneven color throughout the mole, multiple colors within the same mole or moles that look much darker than others.
D – Diameter. Look for moles that are increasing in size or moles that are out of proportion in size compared to the others.
E – Evolution. Look for something that seems odd about a mole but doesn’t necessarily follow the other guidelines listed.
There are many types of skin cancer. It is vital that you be seen right away, at the first sign of a suspicious lesion or mole, so that you can be diagnosed.
Basal cell carcinoma usually occurs on sun-exposed areas of your body, like your neck, arms or face. Monitor your skin for the following signs:
Patients who have had one basal cell carcinoma have an over 50 percent chance of developing another, so regular skin checks are crucial after successful treatment.
Squamous Cell Carcinoma
Like basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma occurs on sun-exposed areas of your body, like your neck, arms or face.
Monitor your skin for the following signs:
Actinic Keratosis (pre-cancer for squamous cell carcinoma)
Actinic keratoses appear on the skin as a rough, red, flat or raised growths commonly found on sun-exposed areas of the skin. They are considered to be “pre-cancers” for squamous cell carcinomas of the skin. Actinic keratoses are the result of cumulative UV exposure that causes DNA damage in skin cells, causing those groups of cells to grow at an abnormal rate.
The rate of individual transformation is low, but for a patient with a number of actinic keratoses, the chance of a squamous cell carcinoma developing at some point can be over 10 to15 percent.
Melanoma is the most serious form of skin cancer. It arises from the pigment, making cells of the skin known as melanocytes. Melanoma is the most dangerous form of skin cancer, as it can spread to the lymph nodes and other organs of the body if not detected early. It is for this reason that we urge everyone to get annual skin checks.
Melanomas can arise out of existing moles that change or can start as a new spot entirely. The incidence of melanoma has risen over 200 percent since the 1970s and is likely due to the popularity of tanning beds and significant sun exposure people see over a lifetime. Over 80 percent of melanomas are related to sun exposure.
We firmly believe that early detection saves lives. Schedule your skin check today!
Merkel Cell Carcinoma
Merkel cell carcinoma causes a firm, shiny nodule that shows up on, or just beneath, the skin and in hair follicles. You will find this form of skin cancer on the head, neck and torso.
Sebaceous Gland Carcinoma
Sebaceous gland carcinoma is an uncommon and aggressive form of skin cancer that originates in the oil glands of the skin. It appears as hard nodules and can develop anywhere; however, it usually occurs on the eyelid.
This rare form of skin cancer develops in the skin’s blood vessels and causes red or purple patches on the skin or mucous membranes. This form of skin cancer often occurs in people with a weakened immune system.
Every case of skin cancer is different, so treatment options vary from case to case. The first step is diagnosing skin cancer. This can be done by:
Depending on what type of skin cancer you are diagnosed with, one of the following treatments may be prescribed: