Louis Perri, MD has years of experience in diagnosing and treating skin cancer. Because skin cancer is curable, it is important to catch it early. Anyone in the Sewell, New Jersey area who is concerned about an abnormal looking mole or growth on the skin, should make an appointment at Perri Skin Care for screening today.
Skin cancer is the uncontrollable growth of abnormal skin cells. There are different kinds of skin cancer, each with its identifying characteristics. Cancerous growths can be differentiated from a normal mole or freckle by their typically abnormal shape and color. Cancerous growths will typically be asymmetrical, and the border, and/or color will not be regular. Abnormal growths may also evolve over time, changing shape and size, and will usually end up bigger than the average mole.
Skin cancer diagnosis begins with a careful evaluation of any suspicious lesions or discolored areas, including moles and freckles. Next, a biopsy procedure will may be performed to obtain a small sample of tissue for evaluation in a lab to determine if cancer cells are present.
Most skin cancer is caused by exposure to the sun. It could be long-term exposure or an intense burn. The ultraviolet rays (UVA, UVB, and UVC) in sunlight penetrate the skin, causing it to age and for abnormal cells to develop. UVB rays are responsible for sunburn and are the main cause of melanoma. People with fair skin and light hair and eyes are at a higher risk because they have less melanin which helps to protect them from the UV rays. People who have a family history of skin cancer or who have had it before are more likely to have abnormal growths again.
The first step in treating skin cancer is usually removing the abnormal cells. This is typically an outpatient procedure. In some procedures, the surrounding skin, or margins will be removed as well to try to ensure that any extended strands of abnormal cells are also removed.
Some forms of skin cancer respond to radiation or cryotherapy, where the cells are frozen and removed. There are also some topical medications and chemotherapies designed for skin cancer. If a patient is concerned about a strange mole or growth on their skin, you should definitely ask Dr. Perri to look at it for further advice.
The best way to prevent skin cancer is to use sunscreen and protective clothing when outside and to avoid prolonged sun exposure, especially during the midday hours when the sun’s rays are at their strongest. Sun damage can occur even when it’s cloudy, so wearing sunscreen every day, even in the winter, is vitally important. In addition, having routine skin cancer screenings is important for identifying skin cancer in its earliest stages when treatment may be more effective.
Be sure to call the office today for a skin cancer consultation or book your appointment online.