Cancer is the condition in which the cells multiply profusely without any control over it. Skin cancer is the malignant growth on skin. 90% of the skin cancers are caused due to prolonged exposure to UV rays of sunlight.
Types of skin cancers:
The three common types of skin cancers are classified as:
- Basal cell carcinoma
- Squamous cell carcinoma
- Malignant melanoma
- Basal cell carcinoma: these are the most common type of skin cancer. They are present on the sun exposed areas of skin, commonly seen on face. They are easily treated with radiation therapy. Death is very rare in this type of skin cancer.
- Squamous cell carcinoma: They metastasize more frequently than basal cell carcinoma as they metastasize less frequently.
- Melanomas: melanomas are responsible for 75% of all skin cancer related deaths. These are the least common of the three types. But most fatal once it spreads. They metastasize frequently. These 3 types are most common skin cancers.
The less common skin cancers include merkel cell carcinoma, kaposis sarcoma, dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans, spindle cell tumors, sebaceous carcinomas etc.
Causes of skin cancer
- Prolonged exposure to UV rays leads to skin cancer.
- Smoking can double the risk of skin cancer.
Signs and symptoms of skin cancer:
- Basal cell carcinoma symptoms appear as smooth pearly bump raised on sun exposed area of the skin. Bleeding occurs at the site of tumor.
- In squamous cell carcinoma scaling, thickened patch and redness at site is seen with bleeding and ulceration.
- Melanomas are black and brown lesions with bleeding and ulceration.
Prevention and avoiding sun:
- Avoid direct exposure to UV rays of sunlight.
- Avoid usage of tobacco products.
- Avoid exposure to sunlight from 10 A.M-3 P.M. at this time the rays are at peak responsible for skin cancer.
- When outdoors wearing protective clothing.
- Using good sunscreens to block the UV rays.
- 15 minutes a day maximum is suggested for exposing to sunlight that to for the formation of vitamin D.
- If noticed any signs or symptoms better to consult doctor.
Treatment for skin cancer
- Treatment is done by chemotherapy.
- Moh’s micrographic surgery is used to remove cancer.