Frequently Asked Questions About Skin Cancer
Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer, with more than 9,000 cases diagnosed in the United States every single day. Divine Dermatology specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of all types of skin cancer at our office in Fort Collins and Loveland, CO. We know that being diagnosed with skin cancer can be scary at first, but there are a variety of effective treatments available. Being informed about skin cancer is the first step, and regular visits to a dermatologist are crucial to detect skin cancer in its early stages. Check out these frequently asked questions about skin cancer, and contact us with any remaining questions you might have.
Which Types of Skin Cancer Are The Most Common?
There are many types of skin cancer, but the three most common are basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and melanoma. Basal cell carcinoma is found on areas commonly exposed to the sun, including the face, ears, scalp, neck, chest, upper back, and arms. It is the most common type of skin cancer, with over a million new cases diagnosed in the U.S. every year. The second-most common type of skin cancer is squamous cell carcinoma, which often occurs after lifelong exposure to the sun. Melanoma is the third-most common form of skin cancer and is also the most serious due to its ability to spread easily.
What Skin Cancer Treatments Are Available?
The good news for patients diagnosed with skin cancer is that there are many ways of effectively treating the disease. Early detection is key, and the experienced dermatologists at Divine Dermatology in Fort Collins and Loveland, CO will explore your best options and determine the appropriate course of action. We utilize many skin cancer treatments, including Mohs micrographic surgery, standard excision, curettage and electrodessication, and more.
How Can I Avoid Skin Cancer?
The best way to prevent skin cancer is by minimizing and controlling your exposure to the sun and other forms of UV light like tanning beds and sun lamps. While the sun causes the most damage during summer, its rays are harmful all year long, even when it’s cloudy. While it’s not practical to stay out of the sun altogether, you can manage your exposure. Use sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 every day. Apply your sunscreen liberally and be sure to reapply at least every other hour or after sweating or swimming. Wear sunglasses and sun-protective clothing, and see your dermatologist for a yearly skin exam.
What Does Skin Cancer Look Like?
Each type of skin cancer looks different, and some forms can be very tricky to spot. The first thing you may notice is a change in your skin. It’s important to perform a self-examination of your skin regularly and to schedule an appointment with Divine Dermatology as soon as you notice any changes. Basal cell carcinoma often produces a shiny or pimple-like bump, a scar-like area, red patches, or a sore that won’t heal. Squamous cell carcinoma is often very crusty, raised, red and tender. Melanoma can start looking like a small brown, black or pink mole, but over time changes shape, color, or size and sometimes bleed. If you notice anything unusual with your skin, it’s critical to schedule an appointment with us today.
Where Can I Get Skin Cancer?
The parts of your body that are most frequently exposed to the sun are the same ones that are the most susceptible to skin cancer. Those areas include the head, neck, arms, chest, and upper back. Skin cancer can also develop on areas that are rarely exposed to the sun like the buttocks and genitals, which is another reason why it’s so important to have regular screenings with your dermatologist.
Can Skin Cancer Come Back After Treatment?
While skin cancer treatment aims to eliminate skin cancer altogether, some forms of skin cancer are known to recur. No method can guarantee a 100% cure rate, but we use the latest procedures and technology to remove skin cancer the first time. If it does come back, we have additional treatment methods that are effective in getting rid of your skin cancer once and for all.
Answering Your Skin Cancer Questions in Fort Collins and Loveland, CO
It’s natural to have questions after you or a loved one has been diagnosed with any type of skin cancer. We’d be happy to answer any additional questions you might have, and we encourage you to schedule an appointment with us so that our experienced dermatologists can perform a thorough examination.