Skin Cancer Facts:
- Each year in the U.S. over 5.4 million cases of non-melanoma skin cancer are treated in more than 3.3 million people.
- Each year there are more new cases of skin cancer than the combined incidences of cancers in the breast, prostate, lung, and colon.
- One in five Americans will develop skin cancer in the course of a lifetime.
- Between 40 and 50 percent of Americans who live to age 65 will have either basal cell carcinoma, or squamous cell carcinoma at least once.
There are three primary types of skin cancer: Basal Cell Carcinoma (BCC), Malignant Melanoma (MM), and Squamous Cell Carcinoma (SCC).
BCC: Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is the most common type of skin cancer. It’s also the most commonly diagnosed cancer in the United States. Every year, millions of people learn that they have BCC.
This skin cancer usually develops on skin that gets sun exposure, such as on the head, neck, or back of the hands. BCC is especially common on the face, often forming on the nose. While BCC often develops on skin that has had the most sun, BCC can appear on any part of the body, including the trunk, legs, and arms. People who use tanning beds also get BCC, and they tend to get it earlier in life.
This type of skin cancer grows slowly. It rarely spreads to other parts of the body. Treatment is important because BCC can grow wide and deep, destroying skin, tissue, and bone.
MM: Melanoma is the most serious type of skin cancer. When allowed to grow, melanoma can spread quickly to other parts of the body. This can be deadly. You may be more at risk of this type if you have a family history of skin cancer, many moles, fair skin that burns easily, and other risk factors.
There is good news. When found early, melanoma is highly treatable.
You can find melanoma early by following this 3-step process:
- Learn the warning signs of melanoma.
- Look for the warning signs while examining your skin.
- See a dermatologist if you find any of the warning signs.
SCC: Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) is a common skin cancer in humans. About 700,000 new cases of this skin cancer are diagnosed in the United States each year.
This skin cancer tends to develop on skin that has been exposed to the sun for years. It is most frequently seen on sun-exposed areas, such as the head, neck, and back of the hands. Women frequently get SCC on their lower legs. It is possible to get SCC on any part of the body, including the inside of the mouth, lips, and genitals. People who use tanning beds have a much higher risk of getting SCC. They also tend to get SCC earlier in life. It can spread to other parts of the body. With early diagnosis and treatment, SCC is highly curable.
The keys to avoiding any type of skin cancer are taking care to protect the skin, catching problems early, and treating immediately. Don’t wait; come see us at Inverness Dermatology and Laser today.