Skin Cancer SymptomsWhat are the symptoms of skin cancer?
Most people are alerted to the possibility that they have skin cancer because they notice a difference in the appearance of their skin. Such an occurrence may take the form of a spot, sore, or mole with a changeable size, shape, color, or 'feel'.
Following are the potential skin cancer symptoms :
- There are a variety of different skin cancer symptoms that you should be aware of. Those skin cancer symptoms include sores or changes in the skin that do not heal, ulcers in the skin, discoloring in parts of the skin, and changes in existing moles.
- The most common warning sign of skin cancer is a change on the skin, especially a new growth or a sore that doesn't heal. Skin cancers don't all look the same. The cancer may start as a small, smooth, shiny, pale, or waxy lump. Or it can appear as a firm red lump. Sometimes, the lump bleeds or develops a crust. Skin cancer can also start as a sore or rough red spot that becomes scaly or crusty. Actinic keratosis, which appears as rough, red or brown scaly patches on the skin, is known as a precancerous condition because it sometimes develops into squamous cell cancer. Like skin cancer, it usually appears on sun-exposed areas but can be found elsewhere.
- The majority of melanomas occur on the head, neck, arms and back – ie the skin exposed most to sunlight. Most of them are very dark or black, but they can sometimes be lighter brown or even speckled. The surface is usually raised and sometimes rough. They are not normally circular in shape, but some can be quite close to a circle. In their early stages, they often look like a mole, but with a ragged outline or different shades of colour in it. Sometimes, they appear to be a mole that is bleeding, oozing or crusty. However, the most important thing is that melanomas usually change shape or colour as they grow. Any spot that changes colour or shape should be reported to your doctor.
- Ordinary moles typically appear as evenly colored (brown, black, tan), round spots on the skin. They can be present at birth, or they may appear at any time during a person's life, often after periods of sun exposure. Most are small (less than 6 millimeters in diameter), and they do not change in size or shape, although they may fade somewhat in older individuals. By contrast, melanoma - a much more serious form of skin cancer -usually begins as an abnormal mole.
Changes in the skin are not sure signs of cancer; however, it is important to see a doctor if any symptom lasts longer than 2 weeks. Don't wait for the area to hurt. Skin cancers seldom cause pain.
Summary of skin cancer symptoms :
- A firm, red lump
- A small, pale, smooth, shiny or "waxy" lump
- A sore that begins oozing or bleeding
- A sore or rough red spot that becomes scaly or crusty
- A spot that becomes itchy, tender, or painful
- A spot that becomes red and/or swollen
- A mole that grows or otherwise changes its appearance
- Small blood vessels may be visible within the tumor.
- A central depression with crusting and bleeding (ulceration) frequently develops.
- A basal cell carcinoma (BCC) usually looks like a raised, smooth, pearly bump on the sun-exposed skin of the head, neck, or shoulders.
- A squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) is commonly a well-defined, red, scaling, thickened patch on sun-exposed skin.
- Like BCCs, SCCs may ulcerate and bleed.
- Left untreated, SCC may develop into a large mass.
- The majority of malignant melanomas are brown-to-black pigmented lesions.
- Warning signs include change in size, shape, color, or elevation of a mole.
- The appearance of a new mole during adulthood, or new pain, itching, ulceration, or bleeding of an existing mole should be checked.
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