Skin cancer care
What is skin cancer?
Skin cancer is one of the most common forms of cancer. One in five Americans will develop some form of skin cancer. Skin cancer, which is the abnormal growth of skin cells, most often occurs on the parts of your body that are exposed to the sun on a regular basis. This uncontrolled growth of abnormal skin cells is primarily caused by excess exposure of ultraviolet (UV) rays. Skin can be exposed to UV rays from the sun or from unnatural sources such as tanning beds.
Skin cancer screening and prevention
Risk factors for developing skin cancer include excessive sun exposure, a history of severe sunburn, family history of skin cancer, fair skin and freckles or moles. The best opportunity to reduce the risk of skin cancer is by limiting or avoiding your exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation, using high SPF sunscreen and wearing a hat and other protective clothing when outdoors.
Skin cancer prevention tips:
- Wear sunscreen year-round.
- Avoid the sun when it’s at its highest strength (mid-day).
- Avoid tanning beds.
- Wear protective clothing when outdoors.
- Be familiar with your skin; report any changes to your physician.
A skin self-exam is the key to discovering a possible skin cancer in the early stages. Check your skin regularly for suspicious changes and notify your doctor with any questions. Be on the lookout for:
- Any new, changing, or growing spots/bumps on skin.
- Non-healing sore that bleeds.
- Rough, crusty red patch.
- Wart-like growth.
- A new mole or mole that changes appearance.
- A mole with different colors, irregular shape.
Why choose Beacon?
At Beacon Health System, our experts will help you maintain the health of your skin with prevention measures, screenings, diagnosis and treatment options.
While each case is unique, skin cancer can be highly curable if caught in the early stages. Seek medical attention if you notice any changes to your skin or an enlarging freckle/mole. Your primary care physician may direct you to one of Beacon’s Dermatology physicians who will perform a thorough evaluation and discuss the next steps. Beacon Medical Group Dermatology uses the latest technology and techniques for treating every type of skin cancer.
If you have an increased risk for skin cancer, our genetic counselor can advise you about how to protect your health.
We understand that cancer affects more than just your body. That’s why we also offer educational resources and support groups to help you and your family during your cancer journey.