Have you spent a lot of time in the sun? Are you worried about a suspicious mole?
Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States, but if diagnosed early, it’s also one of the most treatable.
Our goal at Beaird Dermatology is to promote yearly skin examinations for the health and wellbeing of the community. Don’t put off a professional skin examination with our expert care team at Beaird Dermatology, located in Hoffman Estates, Illinois.
What Happens During a Full-Body Skin Examination?
During your complete skin exam, your dermatologist examines all surfaces of your skin, including your scalp and nails. Our expert providers take special care with areas that are regularly exposed to the sun, but also pay attention to any hidden areas as skin cancer can present in unexpected places.
How can I Prevent Skin Cancer?
• Avoid Harmful UV rays by covering up when you’re outdoors.
• Seek shade during peak sun hours between 10AM & 4PM.
• Use sunscreen daily (SPF 15 or higher).
• Avoid tanning booths.
• Self-skin checks for changing or new moles. Physician visits for professional opinion.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends a yearly full-body skin exam by a licensed dermatologist.
What is Skin Cancer
Skin cancer is the growth of abnormal, or malignant, skin cells. There are three types of skin cancer:
• Squamous Cell Carcinoma
• Basal Cell Carcinoma
Skin cancer can take any of these forms, but the most dangerous is melanoma, a fast-growing skin cancer that can be deadly.
How is Skin Cancer Diagnosed?
Your dermatologist pays attention to any suspicious areas using the “ABCDE” criteria to identify irregularities that might signal melanoma.
- Border (uneven or irregular)
- Color (multiple or uneven)
- Diameter (large in size)
- Evolving (growing or changing)
How is Skin Cancer Treated?
Your provider will biopsy any suspicious areas using local anesthetic to painlessly remove a small tissue sample for analysis. We then send the biopsy to a dermatopathologist. We call you with the biopsy results in 1-2 weeks.
If skin cancer is diagnosed early, a simple surgery to remove the affected cells may be enough. Depending on the severity of the skin cancer, a topical cream may be used for treatment.
In sensitive areas such as the face and hands, MOHS surgery may be necessary.