The sun’s penetrating rays can be unforgiving. Ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun is the main cause of skin cancer, the most common form of cancer in the United States. Every year, more people are diagnosed with skin cancer than the total number of all cancers. But the sun isn’t alone in the blame. Tanning beds can also be harmful.
What Are the Most Common Skin Cancers?
The three main types of skin cancer are melanoma (which is the most serious type) and two nonmelanoma skin cancers - Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) and Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC). Both of these nonmelanoma skin cancers are usually very treatable, especially if caught early.
Who Can Get Skin Cancer?
People who have dark skin tones often believe they are not at risk for developing skin cancer, but that is a dangerous misconception. Although dark skin does not burn in the sun as easily as fair skin, everyone, no matter their race or ethnicity is at risk for skin cancer. That’s true even for people who don’t typically get sunburns. It does not matter if you consider your skin light, dark, or somewhere in the middle. You are at risk for skin cancer.
You can help lessen your risk of getting by taking precautions, such as regularly using sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher and making sure your sunscreen has UVA AND UVB protection.
What Are the Signs of Skin Cancer?
Skin cancer typically develops on areas of our bodies that are most often exposed to the sun: face, hands, arms, chest, neck, and legs. But it can also be found in other areas not associated with the sun, including beneath your fingernails or toenails, the palms of your hands, and the genital area. The signs and symptoms of skin cancer vary according to the type of cancer, but usually include different spots or speckles, or a mole that changes in color or size. If you’re worried about any changes to your skin, make an appointment with one of our board-certified dermatologists.
Skin Cancer Treatment
Treatment options vary and will depend on the size and location of the lesion. Here at Feinstein Dermatology, we use a couple of effective treatments. One of them is Mohs surgery (microscopically controlled surgery). It’s a fairly minor surgery that’s performed under local anesthesia and done in stages in one visit in the comfort of our office. We also perform the latest non-invasive treatment option for nonmelanoma skin cancer, a superficial radiation therapy technique called Superficial Radiation Therapy (SRT).
What is Superficial Radiation Therapy?
Superficial Radiation Therapy, a low energy form of x-ray technology is becoming more popular. The treatment uses very focused, low-doses of radiation that only penetrates the skin’s surface, effectively destroying these cancers. The doses go only skin deep, which help minimize scarring and deep tissue damage. It does not involve anesthesia or cutting. Patients receive treatments about once or twice or week, over a series of weeks. There’s very little to no downtime.
Make an Appointment to See Us
If you’re looking for Delray Beach skin cancer treatments or for more information on Superficial Radiation Therapy (SRT), call us and make an appointment. As a full-service skin care dermatology and cosmetic surgery center, we treat several skin conditions and offer the best cosmetic and anti-aging treatments in South Florida. We look forward to meeting you!