Skin Cancer Facts

Skin Cancer Facts
Skin cancer is a cancer that forms on the skin from abnormal cell growth, and it is estimated that more than 90% of skin cancers are due to exposure to the sun's ultraviolet radiation. There are three main types of skin cancers including malignant melanoma, squamous-cell carcinoma, and basal-cell carcinoma. Most people diagnosed with basal-cell carcinoma or squamous-cell carcinoma will not die from the disease. Those diagnosed with melanoma and properly treated have a good chance of survival as well. One of the best ways people can protect themselves from developing squamous-cell carcinoma or melanoma is to wear proper sunscreen and decrease their exposure to the sun's radiation.
Interesting Skin Cancer Facts:
Skin is actually an organ. It has many jobs including protecting the body from ultraviolet rays, but too much exposure can lead to certain skin cancers.
Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer around the world, making up approximately 40% of cancer cases each year.
Some countries such as New Zealand and Australia have higher rates of skin cancer due to the level of exposure to the sun's rays, which are stronger and hotter in these areas of the world.
In addition to basal-cell, squamous-cell, and melanoma, there are other less common skin cancers such as Merkel cell carcinoma, Kaposi's sarcoma, spindle cell tumors, sebaceous carcinomas, angiosarcoma, leiomyosarcoma, and keratoacanthoma, among many others.
Squamous-cell and basal-cell carcinomas tend to develop on areas of skin that are exposed to the sun such as the face, neck, lips, ears, and even the back of a person's hands.
Melanomas can grow on areas of skin not exposed to the sun as well as areas that are exposed, and these types of cancers tend to be more deadly because they can spread and can be difficult to treat.
There are several risk factors for skin cancer that people can avoid to reduce their chances of developing the disease. These include exposure to UV radiation from the sun, and from tanning beds, sunburns, and exposure to certain chemicals such as paraffin, coal tar, and particular oils.
There are several risk factors for skin cancer that a person cannot change such as having pale skin, genetic predisposition, age, compromised immune system due to other disease, and moles that grow or change shape.
There are symptoms of skin cancer one can watch out for and visit their doctor if they appear, including a mole that grows in size, changes shape or color, or growth of a new mole; skin that becomes scaly or rough, or bleeds or appears different; a sore on the skin that refuses to heal; or if color begins to spread beyond a mole's regular edges.
To help prevent skin cancer a person should protect their skin when outdoors. This includes wearing a hat, using sunscreen, wearing sunglasses with 100% UVB and UVB absorption, avoiding tanning beds or sun lamps (which are very dangerous for your skin), and wearing clothing that covers their skin as much as possible.
It is estimated that one out of every five Americans will develop a form of skin cancer in their lifetime, so it's important to protect the skin and watch for changes in the skin.


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