Skin Cancer Warning Signs
Knowing skin cancer warning signs enables a person to detect a problem while it is still curable. Many signs of skin cancer are unnoticeable until it is too late if careful examination is not done regularly. There are three types: Basal cell carcinoma (BCC), Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), and Melanoma. Understanding all the types will prepare a person for better detection and ultimately more successful healing. Prevention is the key to lessening the worry about contracting this disease.
Defining the problem is just as important as detecting it. Cells damaged by the sun multiply and take over the surface causing unsightly blemishes, moles, and ultimately tumors. Unlike most cell diseases, the signs of skin cancer are visible making it more treatable. Change in surface color is a sign indicating very early or even false detection. Moles can be harmless, nevertheless should be monitored carefully for changes. Skin cancer warning signs include itchiness and uneven growth around a mole. The people in most danger of getting this disease have fair complexion and light hair. Due to the nature of the complexion freckles already exist therefore creating a starting point for the disease. Signs of skin cancer are harder to find in people with darker complexion due to the already darkened skin masking the infected areas.
Once a problem is detected, call the doctor to get the problem medically treated. A dermatologist will best be able to determine whether the concern is truly signs of skin cancer or simply a change in body formation; to determine that a skin biopsy will be collected. The method will depend on the type and severity of the problem. People with weakened immune systems are more susceptible to disease and the doctor may require more intensive testing to ensure nothing is missed. "My people perish for lack of knowledge." (Hosea 4:6)
Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is the most widely diagnosed form of skin cancer attacking more than 1 million people a year. Pink or clear in color BCC is hard to detect therefore takes careful and through examination. Threat to the rest of the body is not common, however immediate treatment is crucial to eliminate the danger of further problems. Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) is the second most diagnosed form, which can spread to other parts of the body if not treated early and effectively. SCC can look like a scab or tough area that doesn't heal. This type is most prevalent in elderly fair-skinned men. Though melanoma is diagnosed the least it remains the most deadly due to the faint or even invisible warning signs. Undetected, melanoma can spread to the lymph system where it becomes deadly. Early detection is the key. A misshapen mole and discoloration around a mole are the most widely seen indications. Just like any other diagnosis, if the signs of cancer are found early the survival rate is very high. Other forms of cancer include Merkel cell carcinoma, dermatofibromasarcoma protuberans, Pagets disease and cutaneous T-cell lymphoma. These are non-melanoma and are very rare, but keep the same guidelines about skin cancer warning signs.
Protection from the sun is the best way to prevent this disease. This can be accomplished by applying sun screen, cover the body with a hat and long clothing, choosing building shade when sitting outside, and being aware of UV ratings for the day. Weather websites and possibly the local weather channel has information concerning the UV index for the day. Generally between 10 am and 2 pm is the most dangerous time to be outside. Likewise, the winter months are more dangerous than summer months due to the placement of the sun and the increase of cloudy days. Some cases of melanoma are linked to genetic dispositions and should be watched carefully. With the increasing depletion of the ozone and careless actions towards prevention and detection, the rates are rising and skin cancer warning signs should be a major focus in anyone's life. 1 in 5 Americans will get some form of skin cancer and the rates are rising. The amount of people diagnosed with skin cancer outnumbers prostate, breast, lung, colon, uterus, ovarian, and pancreas cases combined. The ultraviolet (UV) index measures the level of damage the sun can give on a particular day. Other dangers that may indicate signs of skin cancer include taking certain medicines including contraceptives and steroids. Any disruption of the natural function of the body opens the door to infection and disease even if the intention is to heal. When a person is taking certain medications a doctor may advise not to go out in the sun for this reason.
Other ways to decrease the chances of contracting topical diseases caused from the sun include wearing specially designed clothes with UV protectant in the fabric. Though this may be a pricey option, the alternative is less desirable. Swimsuits that cover from neck to knee are increasing becoming popular and are made of this material. Children's swimsuits made from sun-protective fabric and designed to cover the child from the neck to the knees are popular in Australia. They are now available in some areas of the United States. When wearing sunscreen it is important to cover all areas including the top of ears, end of the nose, tops of feet, and back of the neck. The scalp is another place where sunburn can occur. Instead of covering the head with sunscreen a hat or scarf offers an easier option. Remember sunscreen is not only important in summer, but even more important in winter. UV blocking sunglasses protect the eyes from excessive exposure. Windows of the house can be covered with a UV blocking film or specifically designed windows can be purchased. In addition to prevention, once a month examination is the best way to catch skin cancer warning signs. Literally every inch of the body needs to be check every time. Mirrors or a spouse help with the hard to see areas like the back and neck. Anything scaly, lumpy, itchy or discolored is a need for concern.
Laser Brown Spot RemovalLaser brown spot removal can eliminate some of the smaller spots and legions on the face and neck. Freckles and age spots are usually brown in color and can cause embarrassment and low self esteem. Using laser skin care treatments can be an appropriate method for these types of lesions and unlike other lasers, the does not cause bruising or excessive redness. A light beam allows non-traumatic treatments of vascular and pigmented lesions. It is a safe and effective way to see immediate and consistent results. Laser treatment is safe and has been used in medical community since the early 1960's, especially in the fields of dermatology (the study of the skin) and plastic surgery. The laser generates beams of light onto a specific site of the body. The light is absorbed by the red blood cells that carry oxygen and the melanin. This causes the destruction of unwanted cells and leaves the healthy cells in the body. This is all done without breaking the surface of the dermis. A vascular legion is formed by having too many blood vessels in the epidermal layers of the skin. Spider veins are the most common type of vascular legions. Pigmented legions are created when the melanin in the skin has too many melanocytes. When the pigment multiplies it causes freckles, brown age spots, and moles.
Laser skin care treatments can vary with each individual. The patient characteristics and the places that are being treated play important factors. Many patients will be required to wear special goggles to protect their eyes from the beams of light during their sessions. Most are placed in a reclined position and treatments are typically done in a doctor's office on an outpatient basis. Anesthesia is usually not required. Some patients report feeling a tingling sensation during the laser brown spot removal followed by a minute amount of redness that usually dissipates within a few hours. Some swelling may occur, lasting 1-2 days, but there will not be any skin discoloration. There are usually no postoperative care requirements. Within 2-3 weeks the patient should see a dramatic improvement. The number of laser skin care treatments depends solely on the legions depth into the dermal layers. The deeper the pigmentation is, the more sessions the patient will have to endure. The entire laser machine is about the size of a VCR. As pulses of energy leave the handset, a soft beeping sound can be heard. The procedure takes only minutes to perform.
There are different types of legions associated with dark pigmented spots. Laser brown spot removal can work for all types. Lentigines are flat brown spots on the skin that are caused by an overabundance of sun exposure. Keratoses are slighted elevated above the epidermis and are often found on the backs of the hands. Freckles are common dark spots associated with fairer skinned people. Dermatosis Papulosis Nigra are small very dark marks primarily seen on people of Asian or African decent. Laser skin care treatments used to eliminate lentigines are the most common of treatments. Brown spots appear on people of fairer skin when they reach middle age or as a result of sun exposure damage. These persist longer than other pigmented legions such as freckles. It is important for a dermatologist (a physician who specializes in disorders of the skin) to diagnose the spots as malignant or non malignant. Early malignant melanoma is a dangerous sign and should be seen and treated immediately. "And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people" (Matthew 4:23). Some brown marks may fade naturally with sun protection. If a broad spectrum sunscreen is applied for 9 months out of the year, improved results may follow. Anti aging creams and skin fading creams can also be applied on a regular basis. These creams should contain ingredients such as: alpha hydroxy acids, vitamin C, retinoids, and azelaic acid.
There are also other options beside laser skin care treatments for the removal of brown spots. The most common type of alternative treatment is a deep tissue chemical peel. A chemical peel is made up of a combination of alpha hydroxy acids and retinol. The alpha hydroxy acids, when left on the face and neck for a prescribed period of time, will burn off the first few layers of epidermis. This allows the body to become stimulated to produce the cells necessary to create collagen and elastin to repair the damaged epidermis. As long as the brown marks are not in the dermal layers (under the epidermis), the peel should remove them. The retinol, which is a derivative of vitamin A, moisturizes the skin and adds hydration to aid in the repair. Unfortunately the peel will not last forever. Consistent peels are necessary to maintain the facial appearance. Working in conjunction with other face creams and lotions, the chemical peel is a promising alternative to laser brown spot removal. It can also be much less costly. Most health insurance plans will not pay for a laser treatment because it falls under the "plastic surgery" category. However, if a dermatologist writes a prescription for a chemical peel, the pharmaceutical component of a health insurance plan may pay a portion. It is wise to check with your health insurance carrier about approval of both methods before making a decision. Always take caution when choosing a plastic surgeon or any chemical peel products. A wrong choice in either case can cause harmful damage to the skin.