What would you guess is the most common form of cancer? Lung, colon or perhaps liver? Surprisingly the answer is skin cancer. Facts clearly show that over one million people are diagnosed with this disorder annually. Many organizations both government and private health organizations find these numbers alarming, particularly since skin cancer is but one of many forms of this deadly disease.
Another thing that is highly alarming the fact that anybody can be diagnosed with the disorder, young, old or otherwise. Grand Rapids dermatologists will tell you that skin cancer is a very treatable form of the disease, provided you catch it early. Skin cancer facts state that it is actually the more preventable and treatable cancer.
There are a number of possible causes of skin cancer. However, the most common cause is excessive exposure of the skin to sunlight. Light from the sun contains ultra-violet rays, which are known to mutate the genetic composition of cells in the skin. Although light from other sources such as tanning booths, sunlamps and x-rays also produce ultra violet rays, Grand Rapids dermatologists believe they are not as dangerous as the direct rays from the sun.
At an early stage, symptoms of skin cancer are not distinctive. The most common symptom of skin cancer is change in the appearance of the skin. Your skin may start to darken in some parts while in some cases, a new growth or sore may develop. Such signs do not disappear quickly. If you find yourself with such a situation – a spot, a sore or a growth that is not healing – Grand Rapids dermatologists advise that you consult a physician immediately.
The Grand Rapids dermatologists concur that skin cancer exists in three forms.
1. Basal Cell carcinoma
2. Squamous Cell carcinoma
Basal Cell Carcinoma and Squamous Cell Carcinoma are, according to most skin cancer facts, the most common of the three types. That being said melanoma is the most deadly as it will spread quickly. This type of cancer is also called Basal Cell Epitheioma, the two Basal Cell forms of the disease generally start in the upper levels of your skin, but can and do go deeper than any other form of skin cancer. This fact makes it a good deal harder to detect. If you are from Northern European countries or Latino, you are likely fair skinned and more prone to this skin disease.
Squamous Cell Carcinoma is, according to Grand Rapids dermatologists, rising fast. Studies show that nearly 20% of all cancer sufferers are dealing with this type of skin cancer. Facts state that this skin cancer normally affects the upper layer of your skin; however, it can spread much faster than Basal Cell Carcinoma and accounts for 5% of all skin cancer fatalities. As a general rule, Squamous Cell occurs around the edge of your lips, face, back of the hands and ears.
No one would argue against prevention being better than cure, and this is very true of skin cancer. Facts sheets from Grand Rapids dermatologists will advise you to prevent skin cancer by staying out of direct sunlight, utilizing shade, use umbrellas to shade yourself, hats, caps and wearing sun blocker.