“I have a passion to protect my patients from skin cancer.” – Georgann A. Poulos, M.D.
Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States. Skin cancers can be found on any part of the body, however 80 percent appear on the face, head, or neck, where they can be disfiguring and dangerous.
Types of skin cancer
Basal cell carcinoma is the most common type of skin cancer. It tends to grow slowly and rarely spreads. If left untreated it can grow deep beneath the skin and into the underlying tissue and bone.
Squamous cell carcinoma is the second most common kind of skin cancer. It frequently appears on the lips, face, or ears and sometimes spreads to distant sites.
Malignant Melanoma is the most dangerous type of skin cancer. If discovered early enough, it can be cured. If it is not treated early, malignant melanoma may spread throughout the body and can be deadly.
One in five Americans will develop a skin cancer during his/her lifetime. Melanoma is the most common form of cancer in young adults 25-29 years old and the second most common form of cancer in adolescents and young adults 15-29 years old. The five year survival rate for patients diagnosed early (before it spreads to lymph nodes) is 98% which is why early diagnosis is so important.
Who gets skin cancer …and why
The primary cause of skin cancer is ultraviolet radiation—most often from the sun, but also from artificial sources like tanning booths. The quest for the perfect tan and an increase in outdoor activities are behind the alarming rise in skin cancers.
Everyone is at risk for skin cancer, but the risks are greater in those people with fair skin, freckle easily and light colored hair and eyes. A large number of moles, or moles of unusual size or shape, and those with a family history of skin cancer or a personal history of blistering sunburn are also at an increased risk
Prevention and detection
The best prevention is to seek shade, cover up and wear sunscreen with SPF of 30 or more. The best way to detect skin cancer is to look for new or changing spots on your skin. If you spot anything suspicious, call our office at 440-792-4802 to schedule your full body skin exam.
-Georgann A. Poulos, M.D.
Brecksville Dermatology offers full body skin exams, skin cancer screenings and treatments and products to reverse the signs of sun damage. Check your skin regularly and if you notice a concerning area call us at 440.792-4802. The office is located at 8751 Brecksville Road, Suite 50 in the Westfield Bank Building.