The 3 Types of Skin Cancer and Their Treatments
Going for a skin cancer screening can be incredibly anxiety-inducing. After all, no one likes to hear the word "cancer."
You're not alone though. More than 9,500 people are diagnosed with skin cancer every day in the United States. Even if you don't have this illness, it's good to get screened for it. It's actually a very treatable disease and the sooner you know, the better.
What most people aren't aware of is that there are 3 types of skin cancer.
Each has varying levels of seriousness, but all of them can be treated. It's important to take care of your skin, get screened frequently, and seek the appropriate treatment where necessary.
Basic Cell Carcinoma, the Most Common Type of Skin Cancer
Basic cell carcinoma (often referred to as BCC) makes up the most common type of skin cancer in the USA.
BCC usually occurs in exposed areas of the skin, because the most common cause is too much exposure to sunlight. Those with fair skin and light eyes are at the most risk from this disease.
The most common treatment for BBC is surgery. Making a dermatology appointment means you'll be able to discover the most appropriate skin cancer treatment and have it performed by a skilled dermatologist.
Surgeries used to treat this include electrosurgery and Mohs surgery, although some cases can also be treated with radiation therapy.
Squamous Cell Carcinoma, the Second Most Common and Second Most Serious Type
The accelerated growth of squamous cells can result in squamous cell carcinoma (or SCC).
SCC looks different on every person who has it, but it can look like warts or red, rough patches on the skin. Any unusual appearance of the skin should be checked out with a skin cancer screening since the symptoms can be so unique.
It's caused by exposure to damaging radiation (such as ultraviolet).
Surgery is the most effective treatment for SCC. The skin infected with cancer will be cut out, and replaced with a skin graft to get rid of the cancer cells.
Malignant Melanoma, the Most Serious of the 3 Types of Skin Cancer
Melanoma has the highest fatality rate of all skin cancers, but it's also very treatable when caught early.
It has a variety of causes. Like the other two kinds of skin cancer, it's thought to often be caused by radiation or exposure to sunlight, but there's also thought to be a hereditary factor.
It may be panic-inducing to receive a malignant melanoma diagnosis, but skin cancer specialists can be very effective in getting rid of the disease.
Surgery is the only option, with the goal of removing the melanoma and replacing it with a skin graft.
Take Preventative Measures and Go for Regular Screenings
Many people avoid regular screenings, but it's important not to. Regular screenings are the main way that any of the 3 types of skin cancer will be caught, and they're all curable when detected early enough.
Making sure to protect your skin when spending a lot of time in the sun is also a worthwhile preventative measure.
For more health and wellness tips, check out the rest of our blog to take the best care of yourself possible.