What Does Skin Cancer Look Like? Visual Guide to Warning Signs

What Does Skin Cancer Look Like? Visual Guide to Warning Signs

Lately skin cancer has been on the rise. Even with all the SPF that people are putting on, there is still a large risk. First thing’s first, it’s important to know the 3 most common types of skin cancer, also known as The Big Three. They are basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and melanoma.

The most common of the three is basal cell carcinoma. Generally, they look like little red patches or open sores but they can also be non assuming like a flat scar, patch of eczema, or pearly pimple. Good news is, this type is very easy to cure. It requires simply scraping or burning off spots.

Squamous Cell Carcinoma is the second most common and it is more deadly. They too look like little raised red bumps, similar to a wart. They are caused due to UV exposure and are more common in older, light skinned people. This is treated similar to basal cell carcinoma.

The third and most deadly skin cancer is melanoma. It accounts for only 1% of skin cancer victims. Moles are typically the way to find out. It is discovered using the ABCDE’s which stands for asymmetry, border, color, diameter, and evolution. Basically, if a mole starts changing in shape, color and size and progress, you should go see a doctor. They are good at hiding in places like the scalp.

To help lessen the risk of cancer, always use sunscreen whenever in the sun.

Key Points:

  • 1There are 4.3 million cases of Basal Cell Carcinoma in the US per year.
  • 2Only 1% of all skin cancer is a Melanoma, the deadliest skin cancer.
  • 3Sunscreen is not always enough, wear hats, long sleeves and stay in the shade whenever possible.