May is officially the Skin Cancer Awareness Month and ZOYLO wants to raise an awareness on Skin Cancer and the factors attributing to this form of cancer. This is one of the most common forms of cancer affecting people worldwide. To detect the stage of skin cancer, doctors carry out a number of tests. The result lets your doctor know how big the cancer is and whether it has spread.
It is treatable if detected at the right time.
Types of Skin Cancer -
Skin cancer is classified into three major types-
- Basal Cell Carcinoma - This is the most common form of skin cancer affecting the face and neck that is most exposed to sunlight.
- Squamous Cell Carcinoma - This type pf skin cancer especially arises in the tissues lining the passages of the respiratory and digestive tracts.
- Melanoma - Though rare, melanoma skin cancer develops on the pigments of the skin and are dangerous. They can spread to other parts of the body but if treated at the right time, can be cured with a surgery.
Risk Factors for Skin Cancer -
- Ultraviolet Exposure - Excess exposure to sunlight and tanning beds lead to absorption of UV rays thus developing into skin cancer over the years.
- Age - As people age, their susceptibility to skin cancer increases. Also artificial tanning abuse in salons from a very young age, might lead to development of melanoma earlier.
- Suppressed Immune System - When the immune system gets weak due to certain infectious diseases like cancer, HIV/AIDS or medicines/treatments, it is known as immunosuppression. This leads to unabashed entry of foreign entities into the body leading to skin cancer.
- Previous history of Skin Cancer - For people who have already had skin cancer, there is a chance of a second relapse of skin cancer in a bout of two years.
- Skin Tone - People with a lighter skin tone (Caucasians), are always at a higher risk of developing skin cancer. Also if your skin is more prone to sunburns or freckles, the chance of getting skin cancer increases.
Signs and Symptoms of Skin Cancer -
The most common signs and symptoms of skin cancer will show itself on the skin in the form of
- pink, bumpy lesions that might bleed after a minor trauma
- a wart-like growth
- a reddish raised patch on skin that are crusty and itchy
- persistent, scaly red patches
Moreover, a mole can also become cancerous at times, though their growth and formation will differ from a regular harmless mole. A cancerous mole that usually would be melanoma will look asymmetrical, with a change in colour and gradually increasing the diameter.
Diagnosis and Treatment of Skin Cancer -
Skin Cancer can be easily diagnosed by the biopsy of tumour on skin. Studying the characteristics of tumour, a dermatologist is able to confirm skin cancer.
Skin cancer if treated at the right stage is curable. Here are some effective methods followed by medical practitioners to treat skin cancer.
- Topical medicines in the form of creams and gels
- Surgical excision
- Electro-desiccation and curettage
- Laser surgery
- Radiation therapy
Prevention of Skin Cancer -
As it is known that Prevention is better than Cure; skin cancer can be warded off to a greater extent if taken the right precautionary measures.
- Use high SPF sunscreen with broader spectrum when going out.
- Use protective clothing and avoid going out in the sun from 10 am - 4 pm.
- DO NOT use tanning beds. There is nothing harmful than this.
- Include adequate Vitamin D in your diet.
- Parents should ensure that children avoid excess exposure to the sun.
Skin Cancer is preventable and treatable. ZOYLO aims at raising awareness against skin cancer. Visit a dermatologist or oncologist at once if you notice an abnormal patch on your skin. Book appointment on ZOYLO.