Basal cell carcinoma is the most frequently occurring kind of skin cancer, accounting for 90% of all skin cancers diagnosed today. This kind of skin cancer develops on the:
While it doesn't often spread to other parts of the body, this kind of skin cancer can still be damaging, so it requires immediate treatment. Basal cell carcinoma is found in the skin cells making up the lower layers of the skin.
Squamous cell carcinoma is similar to basal cell carcinoma in that it results from sun (or indoor tanning) exposure. This type of skin cancer is more likely to spread to other areas, such as the lymph nodes, than basal cell carcinoma.
The squamous cells affected in squamous cell carcinoma are those found on the top layers of your skin, the ones that your body sheds naturally over time. While squamous cell carcinoma doesn't tend to spread, it's more likely to spread than basal cell carcinoma. This type of cancer does require prompt treatment as a precautionary measure.
Melanoma is a serious and potentially deadly kind of skin cancer. Melanoma can spread quite quickly, causing serious damage to the nearby lymph nodes and even the internal organs if it's not treated promptly. While melanoma can be deadly if not treated, prompt treatment has a very high success rate for most patients.
The treatment for skin cancer depends on several factors, including the type of cancer and how early it was diagnosed. Dr. Freeman frequently excises both basal and squamous cell carcinoma growths on-site at the Michael J. Freeman, MD, PA offices.
With surgical removal, the skin cancer can often be fully resolved early on. In the case of melanomas, Dr. Freeman will treat patients on a case-by-case basis. Options may include:
In most cases, skin cancer can be treated very effectively, so it's important to report any skin changes as soon as you notice them.