Patient Education

At Farmington Dermatologists, we place significant importance on patient education. When you come in for your appointment, we will make sure that you fully understand your condition, and take the time to answer any questions you may have. When it comes to skin cancer, there are three common types: Squamous cell, Basal cell, and Melanoma. Read on to learn more about these skin cancers.

This doctor was great. He let me tell him the whole story of what was going on and was able to tell me exactly what the problem was even though a couple of other doctors had told me something different. He was absolutely right and was very pleasant and personable and I would definitely go back and recommend him to other people seeking a dermatologist. As someone who works at a hospital and works with a lot of doctors, he is one of the greats.”

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Types of Skin Cancer

Squamous Cell

Squamous cell skin cancer is the most common type of skin cancer for people with heavy photodamage. This type of cancer is mainly caused by UV exposure over the course of a lifetime. It most commonly occurs in areas frequently exposed to the sun, though it can occur anywhere. Although rare, squamous cell skin cancer may spread to other areas of the body.

Basal Cell

Basal cell skin cancer is the most common form and is also the most curable. This type of skin cancer begins in the basal cell layer of the skin and is most commonly found on the face and areas frequently exposed to the sun. Individuals with fair skin tones have a higher risk of developing basal cell skin cancer. Although it is rare for this type of skin cancer to spread to other parts of the body, it can grow and disrupt nearby organs and tissues.

Melanoma

Melanoma is the most aggressive type of skin cancer, and forms in the pigment cells of the skin. This type of skin cancer is caused in part, by over-exposure to UV rays. It can occur on any part of the body but is most commonly found on the face, neck, chest, and back. Patients with fair skin, freckles, and light hair and eyes are at a greater risk to develop Melanoma. It can easily spread to other areas of the body if left untreated.

When you come in for your skin cancer evaluation, there are multiple steps that will take place. These include detection, diagnosis, treatment, and maintenance. If you are interested in learning more about skin cancer, contact us today to schedule an appointment in Farmington Hills.

At what age does skin cancer typically occur?

Cancerous lesions like basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma usually appear after the age of 50.

Can a dermatologist tell if you have skin cancer?

Yes. dermatologists are trained medical professionals who can give visual examinations and run laboratory tests to identify skin cancer and how to treat it.

Can a dry patch of skin be cancer?

Dry, scaly patches of skin are commonly associated with actinic keratosis, which is a precursor to types of skin cancer, but is not itself cancerous.

Can a skin cancer look like a pimple?

The most common type of cancer, basal cell carcinoma, appears in many forms, including a reddish bump, which can resemble a pimple.

Does skin cancer hurt to the touch?

Rarely do skin cancers hurt to the touch, unless they grow along a nerve, in which case they can cause itchiness, tenderness, or a burning sensation.

How do doctors check for skin cancer?

Dermatologists will begin with a visual examination of the patch of skin that has peculiarities, and may sample the tissue to analyze it further to determine diagnosis.

How does skin cancer start?

Nearly all skin cancer is caused by UV damage from frequent, unprotected sun exposure or the use of UV tanning beds. The symptoms and signs of various cancers have different initial symptoms.

Is Skin Cancer raised or flat?

Because there are many types of skin cancer, it can appear in many different forms. It can be raised, flat, or depressed into the skin.

Is there a difference between skin cancer and melanoma?

Melanoma is a type of skin cancer, and skin cancer is the overall category, containing multiple types of cancer.