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Skin Cancer: Types, Signs, And Treatment Options

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Every year, thousands of people are diagnosed with skin cancer. Cancer typically starts in the cells between the superficial layer of skin and the other layers of skin. Skin cancer can metastasize and spread to other parts of the body. If it isn't caught in time, it can be fatal. There are several things that you can do to lower your risk of getting skin cancer, such as wearing sunblock before you are exposed to the sun for long periods of time. This guide goes over the types of skin cancer, the signs, and the treatments for it.

Types of Skin Cancer

Though there are many types of skin cancer, the two major ones include:

  • Squamous cell carcinoma – Can be superficial, nodular, or morpheaform. Squamous cell carcinoma is the most common type of cancer that is diagnosed in humans, affecting as many as one million people in the country each year.

  • Basal cell carcinoma – This cancer isn't as common as squamous. It is usually found in people with compromised immune systems.

The other types of skin cancer aren't very common. They are:

  • Cutaneous lymphoma

  • Merkel cell carcinoma

  • Melanoma

  • Atypical fibroxanthoma

Signs of Skin Cancer

One of the difficult parts of skin cancer is how hard it is to find the signs for most people until it is too late. Cancer usually turns up on areas that are exposed to the sun, like the face. Sometimes it starts as a mole that looks irregular before it turns to melanoma. The most common symptoms and signs of skin cancer are:

  • Open sore that doesn't heal

  • Red patches of skin that are scaly and bleed

  • Growths that resemble warts

  • Lesions on the skin with raised borders

  • Red or pink bumps on the skin that don't go away

  • Moles that change colors or increase in diameter

Treatment for Skin Cancer

Like with all cancers, the treatment will greatly vary depending on the stage, type, and other factors. Popular treatments related to skin cancer include:

  • Electrodesiccation – The doctor will scrape the area with the tumor until it is gone and cauterize the end of it with a special electric needle.

  • Surgery – The tumor is removed during surgery. The incision is closed with sutures. In the area is large enough, skin grafts may be used.

  • Radiation – The patient will receive multiple doses of radiation to kill the tumor. It is not favored over the surgical treatments, so it's usually only done for anyone who isn't a good candidate for surgery.


If you suspect you have skin cancer, you should make an appointment with a dermatologist or doctor right away. The sooner you catch it, the more favorable the outcome. To learn more, contact a dermatology clinic like Strnot Dermatology