According to the American Academy of Dermatology, skin cancer is the most common type of cancer. It is also one of the easiest to diagnose and treat in the early stages if patients are educated about what to look for. Read below to gain an understanding of how a dermatologist at Southeast Dermatology in Houston and Pasadena, TX, can treat a case of skin cancer and how the skin condition can be avoided in the future.
Skin Cancer Causes and Risk Factors
The most common cause of skin cancer is too much exposure to the sun, which is why patients in sunny locales must be particularly aware of the risks. According to statistics published by the Skin Cancer Foundation, about 90 percent of nonmelanoma cases are caused by UV rays from the sun. Other risk factors include:
- Pale skin that burns, freckles, or reddens easily
- A personal or family history of skin cancer
- Having a lot of moles
- Continued use of skin tanning equipment
Skin Cancer Treatment Options
It’s important to be screened for skin cancer when you have concerning spots or marks on the skin, or if you are at a higher risk for the disease. This allows you to avoid having to undergo more aggressive and invasive treatments. In its early stages, skin cancer can often be treated by having your Houston and Pasadena dermatologist remove the mole or mark that contains cancerous cells through surgical excision. A technologically advanced procedure called Mohs micrographic surgery ensures that all traces of the disease are eliminated. Cryosurgery, which is the use of liquid nitrogen to freeze off abnormal cells, may also be an option. In difficult cases, radiation therapy and other more aggressive treatments may be needed.
Skin Safety Tips
Take precautions to make sure your skin is protected throughout the year. Follow these simple skin safety tips:
- Wear sunscreen with an SPF that’s recommended by your dermatologist
- Cover up the skin as much as possible when in direct sunlight, and use beach umbrellas when enjoying the beach
- Wear large glasses and large-brimmed hats when outdoors
- Time outdoor adventures for before 10 am or after 4 pm
Let a Dermatologist Check Your Skin
The sooner skin cancer is identified and diagnosed, the better the chance for a successful and minimally invasive treatment. Call (281) 481-0033 or (281) 991-5944 today to schedule an appointment at Southeast Dermatology in Houston or Pasadena, TX.