Skin Cancer

Skin Cancer

Skin Cancer services offered in Near John C. Lincoln hospital , Phoenix, AZ

New, unusual, or changing skin lesions might indicate cancer, which is why routine skin evaluations are important. At Dermatology Associates, with two locations in Phoenix, Arizona, the board-certified dermatology team diagnoses and treats skin cancer to reduce your risk of complications. Schedule an appointment at Dermatology Associates by phone or online today.

Skin Cancer Q & A

What is skin cancer?

Skin cancer occurs when you have abnormal growth of skin cells. It commonly appears on areas of skin frequently exposed to sunlight. However, anyone can develop skin cancer, and the cause isn’t always clear. 

Three common forms of skin cancer include squamous cell carcinoma, basal cell carcinoma, and melanoma. Removing the cancer prevents it from spreading to other areas of your body.. Some forms of cancer, particularly melanoma, are more dangerous than others.

What does skin cancer look like?

Depending on the type of skin cancer you have, it may appear as:

  • Scar-like lesions
  • Waxy or pearly bumps
  • Flesh-colored or flat lesions
  • Scabbing or bleeding sores
  • Scaly, crusty lesions
  • Red firm nodules
  • Large brown spots with dark specks
  • Moles that change in appearance
  • Itchy or burning lesions
  • Moles with irregular borders
  • Lesions that increase in size
  • Moles that change in shape or texture

Skin cancer often develops on sun-exposed skin, such as your face, ears, lips, nose, scalp, chest, neck, arms, hands, or legs. However, skin cancer lesions can appear anywhere.

What puts me at risk for developing skin cancer?

The hallmark risk factors for developing skin cancer include:

  • Unprotected sun exposure
  • Tanning bed use
  • Family and personal history of skin cancer
  • Fair skin
  • Having a lot of moles
  • History of sunburns
  • Living in a sunny climate
  • Actinic keratosis (precancerous lesions)
  • Radiation exposure
  • Weakened immune system
  • Exposure to toxins

To protect your skin from the sun, use sunscreen or protective clothing and avoid tanning beds. Check your skin regularly, and see your dermatologist at the first sign of new or unusual skin changes.

How does my provider diagnose skin cancer?

Diagnosing skin cancer involves examining your skin, reviewing your lifestyle habits and medical history, taking a sample of a skin lesion (biopsy), and sending it to a lab for analysis. Your dermatologist tailors a treatment plan that matches your specific needs.

How is skin cancer treated?

Dermatology Associates offers the following treatments to eliminate skin cancer:

  • Excision
  • Freezing
  • Electric current
  • Laser therapy
  • Mohs surgery

Mohs surgery uses a microscope to remove cancerous tissues layer by layer with minimal scarring.

You might also need chemotherapy, radiation therapy, biological therapy, or other cancer treatments if your cancer has spread. A dermatologist follows up with you to periodically screen for additional skin cancer.

Schedule an appointment at Dermatology Associates by phone or online today to get screened or treated for skin cancer.