Schedule A Skin Cancer Screening for Skin Cancer Awareness Month
May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month. Have you gotten a skin cancer screening in the past year?
Bay Area Cosmetic Dermatology is proud to provide patients the information and resources they need to watch for early warning signs of cancer. Some kinds of skin cancer are deadly when not addressed early, so we encourage you to contact our office as soon as possible if you’re unsure about a certain spot or mole. Learn about skin cancer symptoms and more by reading below.
Skin cancer symptoms
Skin cancer is the most common cancer diagnosis in the U.S. It begins with the uncontrolled growth of skin cells that have been damaged by ultraviolet rays. Because of this, skin cancer is usually found in areas most often exposed to the sun including face, neck, chest, and arms. Patients should be informed about common skin cancer symptoms so they can perform regular self-examinations at home.
Some signs include:
Moles with irregular borders
Moles that are not uniform in color
Moles larger than a pencil eraser
Moles that quickly change in size or shape
Of course, moles aren't the only areas of concern. Patients should keep an eye on any freckles, lesions, spots, or patches that change or grow over a short period of time. Unexpected bleeding is another sign you need an examination and skin cancer screening with your dermatologist.
Your skin cancer screening
Don’t wait for Skin Cancer Awareness Month to schedule a screening with a professional. The providers at Bay Area Cosmetic Dermatology have cutting-edge equipment and tools to examine problem areas and make sure your skin stays healthy. We begin your skin cancer screening by asking about your family history of cancer. Our team also asks you to point out any unusual moles or spots. Based on our findings, our team can discuss how to move forward, including a biopsy if necessary.
What happens during a biopsy
Bay Area Cosmetic Dermatology may recommend a biopsy to make sure you don’t have skin cancer. This process includes numbing the area and taking a small sample with a special tool. We do our best to minimize scarring and provide instructions for taking care of your skin at home. The sample is then sent to a lab for analysis. Our staff will reach out after a short period of time with the results. Patients with a skin cancer diagnosis are given options for treatment moving forward.
How to prevent skin cancer
There is no guaranteed way to prevent skin cancer, but you can reduce your risk. We encourage patients to use water-resistant sunscreen when spending any amount of time outdoors. Those with a family or personal history of cancer should schedule at least annual screenings with a dermatologist. The earlier your skin cancer is diagnosed, the better your chances for successful treatment. Our knowledgeable and compassionate team will be with you every step of the way.
Get a screening during Skin Cancer Awareness Month
As we mentioned, discovering skin cancer symptoms early is key. Bay Area Cosmetic Dermatology has trained medical staff and administrators who provide excellent care. This is why we raise awareness about the importance of Skin Cancer Awareness Month. If you would like to schedule a skin cancer screening in San Francisco, CA, contact a member of our staff today. We can start the process together.