SKIN CANCER TYPES

SKIN CANCER TYPES

Basal Cell Carcinoma
Basal cell carcinoma is the most common type of skin cancer.   More than 4 million cases of Basal Cell Carcinoma are diagnosed in the U.S. each year. This highly treatable cancer starts in the basal cell layer of the epidermis (the top layer of skin) and grows very slowly.  Basal Cell Carcinoma usually appears as a small, shiny bump on the skin - mainly on those areas exposed to the sun, such as the head, neck, arms, hands and face.  As with most skin cancer, it commonly occurs among persons with light-colored eyes, hair, and complexion.

Squamous Cell Carcinoma 
More than 700,000 cases of Squamous Cell Carcinoma are diagnosed each year in the U.S. Although more aggressive than basal cell carcinoma, this cancer is highly treatable.  Squamous Cell Carcinoma may appear as nodules or red, scaly patches of skin, and is commonly found on the face, ears, lips and mouth.  However, squamous cell carcinoma can spread to other parts of the body.  This type of skin cancer is usually found in fair-skinned people.

Malignant Melanoma
Melanoma, the deadliest skin cancer, can show up on your body in different ways.  An estimated 87,110 new cases of invasive melanoma will be diagnosed in the U.S. in 2017.  Malignant Melanomas usually begin as a mole that then turns cancerous.  This cancer may spread quickly.  Malignant Melanoma most often appears on fair-skinned men and women, but persons with all skin types may be affected.

Look for the warning signs, which are called the ABCDEs of melanoma:

  • Asymmetry: One half is unlike the other half.
  • Border: An irregular, scalloped, or poorly defined border. 
  • Color: Is varied from one to another; has shades of tan, brown or black; is sometimes white, red or blue.
  • Diameter: Melanomas are usually greater than 6mm (the size of a pencil eraser) when diagnosed, but they can be smaller. 
  • Evolving: A mole or skin lesion that looks different from the rest or is changing in size, shape or color.