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Skin Cancer

Optimize your health with skin cancer treatment at the
Center for Surgical Dermatology.
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Skin Cancer

Optimize your health with skin cancer treatment at the
Center for Surgical Dermatology.

Skin Cancer

What is Skin Cancer?

Skin cancer is a general term encompassing a wide variety of cancers that affect the skin. This type of cancer arises from the transformation and uncontrolled growth of abnormal skin cells, which is caused by unrepaired DNA damage and mutations. 

Skin cancer is the most common cancer in the US and worldwide, with more cases being diagnosed in the US each year than all other types of cancer combined. Skin cancer doesn’t discriminate either—anyone can develop it, no matter their age or skin tone, and it can occur on any part of the body. 

Generally, skin cancer is thought to be caused by cumulative, unprotected exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays, such as from the sun, tanning beds, or sunlamps. UV radiation damages skin cells and when the body cannot keep up with repairing this damage, cell mutations begin to occur; this can trigger the overproduction of abnormal cells. This end result is the development of a cancerous growth.

Dermatologist inspecting a patient's skin

Skin Cancer FAQs

If you are interested in learning more about skin cancer, including common skin cancer symptoms, the different types, skin cancer screenings, prevention tips, and how we treat skin cancer in Westerville, browse our comprehensive FAQs section below. Our board-certified physicians cover these important topics and more to help you better understand this dangerous skin disease so you can optimize your health.

Skin cancer can show up on the skin in many different ways. At the Center for Surgical Dermatology, we recommend our patients look out for three things when performing their regular at-home skin self-exams:

  • NEW – Any new spots or mole, especially if they appear after age 21.
  • CHANGING – If any existing moles or spots have changed in size, shape, color, texture, or sensation (e.g. tenderness).
  • UNUSUAL – Any spot or mole that is different from others on your skin (called the “ugly duckling sign”).

In addition to the tips above on how to identify a suspicious mole or spot, there are other skin cancer symptoms to familiarize yourself with. 

For example, basal cell carcinoma often presents itself as a patch of skin that keeps bleeding or a sore that continuously heals and then returns. Squamous cell carcinoma symptoms include a crusty or scaly patch of skin, wart-like growth, or non-healing ulcer. 

Other skin cancer symptoms include redness or swelling around a mole, scaly skin patches, flat or slightly raised growths, small pearly bumps, and firm scar-like growths.

If you have noticed any of these skin cancer symptoms on your body, we urge you to contact our practice and schedule an appointment with one of our board-certified dermatologists as soon as possible for a professional skin cancer screening in Westerville, Ohio. 

The early stages of skin cancer depends on the type of skin cancer. 

  • Basal Cell Carcinoma – Often appears as a pearly or waxy bump, a flat, flesh-colored or pink scar-like lesion, or a sore that bleeds, scabs over, heals, and returns.
  • Squamous Cell Carcinoma – May show up as red papules or flat, pink, scaly lesions with a crusted surface.
  • Melanoma – This one is a bit more tricky to spot, as it can show up anywhere on the body (not just places exposed to UV rays). This type of skin cancer can resemble a large, brown spot with darker speck; tender lesions that itch or burn; or dark lesions on the palms, soles of the feet, fingertips or toes. Sometimes, melanoma can present as a subtle pink or red papule. Although melanoma can form anywhere on the skin, or in the eye, the most common locations are the back and legs.

These skin cancer symptoms should not be ignored. Early detection and care is key to achieving optimal treatment outcomes. Contact us if you need to schedule a skin cancer screening or would like more information on skin cancer treatment. 

While skin cancer is highly curable when detected and treated early, if left untreated, it can spread to surrounding tissue and become disfiguring and life-threatening. 

The most common types of skin cancer diagnosed in the United States (and worldwide) are basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and melanoma.

Most skin cancers are thought to be caused by excessive exposure to UV rays, including those from the sun, tanning beds, and sunlamps. This excessive exposure results in skin cell DNA damage, causing cell mutations. When DNA damage and cell mutations go unnoticed and unrepaired by the body, the cells start to reproduce out of control, causing the development of cancerous growths and tumors. Individuals may also have a genetic predisposition to developing skin cancer.

Though you cannot completely prevent skin cancer, there are steps you can take to significantly reduce your risk of developing this dangerous skin disease. Our top skin cancer prevention tips include: 

  • Wearing a daily sunscreen with an SPF 30 or higher.
  • Reducing your sun exposure (seek shade when possible and avoid peak sun hours—10 AM to 2 PM).
  • Wear protective UPF clothing.
  • Eating a healthy, well-balanced diet with lots of antioxidants.
  • Visit a dermatologist for annual skin cancer screenings, which are a key part of preventive medicine.

For more information on skin cancer prevention, read our helpful blog here

With continuous improvements and innovations in skin cancer treatment, nearly all skin cancers can be cured if found and treated early, which is why it is important to regularly check your skin for signs of skin cancer and visit your dermatologist for regular skin cancer screenings. 

There are several treatment methods our board-certified dermatologists use to address skin cancer. The best skin cancer treatment will depend on a combination of factors, including the microscopic pattern of the cancer, where it’s located on your body, and your overall health and what your body can tolerate. 

At the Center for Surgical Dermatology, our providers generally use one or a combination of the following to treat skin cancer:

If you have questions about our skin cancer treatment in Westerville, Ohio, or would like to schedule an appointment with one of our highly skilled and experienced providers, please give us a call at (614) 847-4100 or reach out online


Skin Cancer Photos

Skin cancer can take on many different forms, such as an open sore, odd-looking mole, or pearly-looking bump. To help you better understand what skin cancer may look like on your body, take a look at our skin cancer photo gallery below. 

If you notice any of the following skin cancer symptoms on your skin, please contact our practice and schedule a skin cancer screening as soon as possible. 

Open Sore Basal Cell Carcinoma Mole On A Patient's Ear
Recurrent Basal Cell Carcinoma Near A Patient's Nose
Shiny Bump Basal Cell Carcinoma Mole Under A Patient's Nose
Squamous Cell Carcinoma Squamous Cell Carcinoma On A Patient's Lip
Asymmetric Melanoma Mole On A Person's Skin
Irregular Border Close View Of A Melanoma Mole
Color Variation Melanoma Mole
Changing Diameter Melanoma Mole

Skin Cancer Diagnosis & Treatment in Westerville, Ohio

If you’ve recently uncovered a suspicious mole or are experiencing one of the skin cancer symptoms mentioned above, it’s time to visit a board-certified dermatologist for a professional skin cancer screening. Our dermatologists are highly trained in detecting, diagnosing, and treating skin cancer in Westerville, Ohio. We can help you restore and maintain your skin health through personalized care. 

Schedule your skin cancer screening or treatment in Westerville, Ohio, by requesting an appointment online or by calling our clinic at (614) 847-4100.

Contact Us Today

Have questions or concerns? Please give us a call at 614.847.4100.

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