Don't Let Summer Equal Skin Cancer


Think about this: skin cancer is, for the most part, a lifestyle disease, and simply put, a lifestyle disease is a disease associated with the way a person lives. May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month. Read on to find out about the most frequently occurring form of cancer and take the first step in your defense of this serious disease.
  • Skin cancer is so common that one in five Americans will develop it in the course of their lifetime.
  • Ninety percent of non-melanoma skin cancers are associated with exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun.
  • Skin cancer is highly treatable when detected early, but may be deadly if allowed to grow.
  • There are several kinds of skin cancers. Basal Cell Carcinoma (BCC) is one of them and is the most frequently occurring form of all cancers.
  • More than one out of every three new cancers is a skin cancer, and the vast majority are basal cell carcinomas.
What is BCC?Basal cell carcinomas are abnormal, uncontrolled growths that usually develop on sun-exposed parts of your body, especially your head and neck. However, they can occur on any part of your body – even those that are rarely exposed to sunlight. They begin in your skin’s basal cells, which line the deepest layer of your skin. Basal cell carcinomas almost never spread beyond the original site. But they shouldn’t be taken lightly, because they can be disfiguring and possibly deadly if not treated promptly. Although a general warning sign of skin cancer is a sore that won’t heal or that repeatedly bleeds and scabs over, basal cell carcinomas may also appear as:
  • A pearly white or waxy bump, often with visible blood vessels, on your face, neck or ears. The bump may bleed and develop a crust.
  • A flat, scaly, brown or flesh-colored patch on your back or chest.
Check your body, all of it. Do this regularly or come in for a full-body, yearly skin check. This, along with always wearing sunscreen, is the best cancer insurance you can give yourself. If you find a suspicious growth or have had BCC in the past, don’t wait!
Article by
Salt Lake City Facial Plastic Surgeon