The following links are to reputable websites containing general and health information. However, we are not responsible for the content on these websites. No information should substitute for the advice of your doctor. If you have an ongoing health concern or questions about the information presented here, please contact your doctor.
Pre Cancer of the Skin
Pre cancer or actinic keratoses are spots that can turn into skin cancer. The pre cancers need to be treated to prevent them from becoming skin cancers. Pre cancers usually appear in sun exposed areas of the skin. Then can look like a dry, scaley, sandpaper like spot which comes and goes in the same area. Treatment includes creams, spraying with a freezing substance, or surgical removal. Prevention of pre cancers includes sun avoidance, minimal tanning, using sun block and using protective clothing.
See a dermatologist for diagnosis and treatment.
Malignant melanoma is the type of skin cancer which can frequently spread or metastasize into the body. Melanoma is the most common type of cancer in females of all the cancers between the ages of 25 to 30 years old. From 30 to 35 years old, in females, melanoma is second in incidence only to breast cancer. Changes in an existing mole or a new mole could be the beginning of a malignant melanoma. Early detection of a malignant melanoma before it spreads can be lifesaving. Be sure to have any suspicious moles checked by a dermatologist. Try to prevent a melanoma by avoiding the sun, using sun screens and wearing protective clothing.
Squamous Cell Carcinoma
Squamous cell carcinoma is one type of skin cancer that can spread to lymph nodes and to the internal organs of the body. Chronic sun exposure, radiation burns, thermal burns, and immunosuppressive therapy may make people susceptible to developing squamous cell carcinoma. This type of skin cancer can look like an elevated wart like growth. Treatment is usually surgical removal. Squamous cell carcinoma is the second most common type of skin cancer. Try to prevent squamous cell carcinoma with sun screens, protective clothing, and avoiding sun exposure especially between 10:00 AM and 4:00 PM. See a dermatologist if you may have this problem.
Acne is an infection of the oil glands of the skin. Acne can be treated by using a cream such at retin-A to open the blocked oil glands as well as with antibiotics to treat the infection. Antibiotics can be topical or internal or a combination of the two depending on the severity of the infection. Oral antibiotics are needed to reach deeper areas of infection such as acne cysts and nodules. Eating the wrong food does not seem to cause acne. The goal of acne treatment is to improve the appearance of the skin and to minimize scarring from the acne. See a dermatologist for more information.
Basal Cell Carcinoma
Basal cell carcinoma is the most common type of skin cancer. It does not usually spread to the lymph nodes or to the body. It can continue to grow locally however, and without treatment can become very deep. The longer treatment is delayed, the more extensive the lesion becomes and the more involved the treatment is.
A basal cell carcinoma can look like a translucent nodule with a rolled border and perhaps a central ulceration, although other appearances are possible.
Try to minimize the risk of basal cell carcinoma by avoiding sun exposure, using sun screens, and by wearing protective clothing. If you think you may have a basal cell carcinoma, see a dermatologist as soon as possible.
Dermatitis is itchy skin or an itchy rash caused by skin irritation or a skin allergy. Sensitive skin can be irritated by soap or very dry weather. Some children have a skin condition called atopic dermatitis. Skin allergy ranges from poison ivy to allergy to a fragrance in cosmetics or to metal in jewelry. Various treatments are available for dermatitis but diagnosing the cause is the first step in getting better. See your dermatologist for evaluation if you are having trouble with dermatitis or eczema.
Sunscreens are designed to reduce the skins exposure to the sun. They can reflect the suns rays away from the skin or absorb the suns rays before they reach the skin. Some sunscreens are a combination of the two. Sunscreens lose their effectiveness after two to three hour, so reapply often. Using two different brands at the same time may cause them to inactivate each other, so stick with one brand for the day. Although it is better to avoid sun exposure altogether, if you have to be in the sun, a sun screen or sun block will help reduce the resulting skin damage.
Michael P. Golden M.D. | 4100 West 15th Street, suite 212 Plano, Texas 75093 | Phone: 972 596 4121 • Fax: 972 596 9679