Skin Cancer Screening and Treatment
Skin cancer facts
Skin cancer is the most common cancer in the United States, with millions of cases diagnosed each year. It’s also one of the most preventable cancers and highly treatable when found early. Anyone can get skin cancer, regardless of skin color.
Protect Your Skin
- Limit sun exposure between 10 AM and 4 PM when UV rays are the strongest.
- Wear broad-spectrum and water-resistant sunscreen with SPF 30 or more whenever you are outside, even when it is cloudy. Do not forget to re-apply it every 2 hours, or after swimming and sweating.
- Wear sun-protective clothing, like wide-brimmed hat and clothes with an ultraviolet protection factor (UPF) label.
- Avoid tanning beds.
Perform regular skin self-exams
- You can detect skin cancer early if you perform regular skin self-checks.
- Skin cancer is not always caused by the sun that’s why it is important to perform a thorough skin exam.
- Examine your body front and back with your arms raised in a full-length mirror. Be sure to check palms and soles of the feet, in between fingers and toes, and nails. Use a hand mirror to check scalp, neck and buttocks.
When to see a board-certified dermatologist
If you notice any new spots on your skin, spots that are different from others, or spots that are changing, itching or bleeding, schedule an appointment to see a board-certified dermatologist right away.
Common types of skin cancer
- Basal-cell carcinoma (BCC) is the most common type of cancer in the world. It is very slow growing and is highly treatable.
- Squamous-cell carcinoma (SCC). While anyone can develop this type of cancer, it is more common in people with immunosuppression which is why sun protection is crucial for people after organ transplantation.
- Melanoma is one of the most serious types of skin cancer. In people with darker skin, it often begins on the bottom of the foot, palm of the hand, or beneath or around a nail.
Skin cancer treatment
- The choice of treatment depends on the type, stage, and location of skin cancer.
- There are various treatment options that include a medicated cream, surgical removal, and medications, as well as others.
- When diagnosed early, skin cancer is highly treatable.