(Nonmelanoma Skin Cancer)
Alan Rockoff, MD
Dr. Rockoff received his undergraduate degree from Yeshiva College with the distinction of Summa Cum Laude. He received his medical degree from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. His internship and two years of Pediatric residency were at the Bronx Municipal Hospital Center, followed by training in Dermatology at the combined residency program at Tufts and Boston Universities. Dr. Rockoff is certified by both the American Board of Dermatology and the American Board of Pediatrics.
William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR
Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.
- Skin cancer facts
- Basal cell carcinoma
- Squamous cell carcinoma
- What about follow-up care for skin cancer?
- How about vitamin D and cancer?
- What resources are available to patients with skin cancer?
- Pictures of Skin Cancer Signs - Slideshow
- Take the Skin Cancer Quiz
- Pictures of Sun-Damaged Skin - Slideshow
- Skin Cancer (Melanoma) FAQs
- Patient Comments: Skin Cancer - Treatments
- Patient Comments: Skin Cancer - Describe Your Experience
- Find a local Dermatologist in your town
Skin cancer facts
- There are three main types of skin cancer: basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma (the nonmelanoma skin cancers), and melanoma.
- Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in humans.
- Ultraviolet light, which is in sunlight, is the main cause of skin cancer.
- The most common warning sign of skin cancer is a change in the appearance of the skin, such as a new growth or a sore that will not heal. Unexplained changes in the appearance of the skin lasting longer than two weeks should be evaluated by a doctor.
- Nonmelanoma skin cancer is generally curable. The cure rate for nonmelanoma skin cancer could be 100% if these lesions were brought to a doctor's attention before they had a chance to spread.
- Treatment of nonmelanoma skin cancer depends on the type and location of the skin cancer, the risk of scarring, as well as the age and health of the patient. Methods used include curettage and desiccation, surgical excision, cryosurgery, radiation, and Mohs micrographic surgery.
- Avoiding sun exposure in susceptible individuals is the best way to lower the risk for all types of skin cancer. Regular surveillance of susceptible individuals, both by self-examination and regular physical examination, is also a good idea for people at higher risk. People who have already had any form of skin cancer should have regular medical checkups.
Skin cancer is the most common form of human cancer. It is estimated that over 1 million new cases occur annually. The annual rates of all forms of skin cancer are increasing each year, representing a growing public concern. It has also been estimated that nearly half of all Americans who live to age 65 will develop skin cancer at least once.
The most common warning sign of skin cancer is a change in the appearance of the skin, such as a new growth or a sore that will not heal.
The term "skin cancer" refers to three different conditions. From the least to the most dangerous, they are:
- basal cell carcinoma (or basal cell carcinoma epithelioma)
- squamous cell carcinoma (the first stage of which is called actinic keratosis)
The two most common forms of skin cancer are basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma. Together, these two are also referred to as nonmelanoma skin cancer. Melanoma is generally the most serious form of skin cancer because it tends to spread (metastasize) throughout the body quickly. Skin cancer is also known as skin neoplasia.
This article will discuss the two kinds of nonmelanoma skin cancer.
Next: Basal cell carcinoma
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