What Is Skin Cancer

What Is Skin Cancer

Skin cancer information What is it? Incidence How it develops What is skin cancer? Skin cancer is a broad term that refers to any type of cancer that begins in the cells of the skin. These cancers usually develop in the top layer of skin, also known as the epidermis. The most common types of skin cancer are basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma and melanoma. In addition, there are several types of skin cancers that occur much less frequently, including kaposi sarcoma, merkel cell carcinoma, cutaneous (skin) lymphoma, skin adnexal tumors and various types of sarcomas. Skin cancer incidence Each year, more 2 million cases of skin cancer are diagnosed in the United States, and the incidence is increasing. How skin cancer develops Types of skin cancer Learn about the different types of skin cancer. Skin cancer symptoms Read about common skin cancer symptoms. Skin cancer risk factors Read about common risk factors for skin cancer. Skin cancer stages Learn about the stages of skin cancer. How we help We understand you may be feeling overwhelmed with questions and concerns about your cancer and what it all means. Your care team at CTCA will present you with options and guidance so you can make informed decisions about your treatment. Have a question? Chat now Or call and ask an Oncology Information Specialist. We’re here 24/7. 615-3055 Coping with advanced cancer Today, there are more options for advanced cancer treatment. Many therapies can ease side effects and provide you with a better quality of life. Read more about living with advanced cancer
what is skin cancer 1

What Is Skin Cancer

Skin cancer information What is it? Incidence How it develops What is skin cancer? Skin cancer is a broad term that refers to any type of cancer that begins in the cells of the skin. These cancers usually develop in the top layer of skin, also known as the epidermis. The most common types of skin cancer are basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma and melanoma. In addition, there are several types of skin cancers that occur much less frequently, including kaposi sarcoma, merkel cell carcinoma, cutaneous (skin) lymphoma, skin adnexal tumors and various types of sarcomas. Skin cancer incidence Each year, more 2 million cases of skin cancer are diagnosed in the United States, and the incidence is increasing. How skin cancer develops Types of skin cancer Learn about the different types of skin cancer. Skin cancer symptoms Read about common skin cancer symptoms. Skin cancer risk factors Read about common risk factors for skin cancer. Skin cancer stages Learn about the stages of skin cancer. How we help We understand you may be feeling overwhelmed with questions and concerns about your cancer and what it all means. Your care team at CTCA will present you with options and guidance so you can make informed decisions about your treatment.
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What Is Skin Cancer

Basal cell carcinoma begins in the basal cell layer of the skin. Squamous cell carcinoma begins in the squamous layer of the skin. Melanoma begins in the melanocytes, which are the cells that make melanin, the pigment that gives skin its color. Click to see a larger diagram. Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States. The two most common types of skin cancer—basal cell and squamous cell carcinomas—are highly curable, but can be disfiguring and costly. Melanoma, the third most common skin cancer, is more dangerous and causes the most deaths. The majority of these three types of skin cancer are caused by exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light. Ultraviolet (UV) Light Ultraviolet (UV) rays are an invisible kind of radiation that comes from the sun, tanning beds, and sunlamps. UV rays can penetrate and change skin cells. The three types of UV rays are ultraviolet A (UVA), ultraviolet B (UVB), and ultraviolet C (UVC)— UVA is the most common kind of sunlight at the earth’s surface, and reaches beyond the top layer of human skin. Scientists believe that UVA rays can damage connective tissue and increase a person’s risk of skin cancer. Most UVB rays are absorbed by the ozone layer, so they are less common at the earth’s surface than UVA rays. UVB rays, which help produce vitamin D in the skin, don’t reach as far into the skin as UVA rays, but they still can be damaging. UVC rays are very dangerous, but they are absorbed by the ozone layer and do not reach the ground. In addition to sunburn, too much exposure to UV rays can change skin texture, cause the skin to age prematurely, and can lead to skin cancer. UV rays also have been linked to eye conditions such as cataracts. The National Weather Service and the Environmental Protection Agency developed the UV Index to forecast the risk of overexposure to UV rays. It lets you know how much caution you should take when working, playing, or exercising outdoors. The UV Index predicts exposure levels on a 1 to 15 scale; higher levels indicate a higher risk of overexposure. Calculated on a next-day basis for dozens of cities across the United States, the UV Index takes into account clouds and other local conditions that affect the amount of UV rays reaching the ground. Basic Information What Are the Risk Factors? More Information Skin Cancer (National Cancer Institute) NCI Video: Minorities and Skin Cancer Awareness Stay Informed
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What Is Skin Cancer

Basal cell carcinoma begins in the basal cell layer of the skin. Squamous cell carcinoma begins in the squamous layer of the skin. Melanoma begins in the melanocytes, which are the cells that make melanin, the pigment that gives skin its color. Click to see a larger diagram. Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States. The two most common types of skin cancer—basal cell and squamous cell carcinomas—are highly curable, but can be disfiguring and costly. Melanoma, the third most common skin cancer, is more dangerous and causes the most deaths. The majority of these three types of skin cancer are caused by exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light. Ultraviolet (UV) Light Ultraviolet (UV) rays are an invisible kind of radiation that comes from the sun, tanning beds, and sunlamps. UV rays can penetrate and change skin cells. The three types of UV rays are ultraviolet A (UVA), ultraviolet B (UVB), and ultraviolet C (UVC)— UVA is the most common kind of sunlight at the earth’s surface, and reaches beyond the top layer of human skin. Scientists believe that UVA rays can damage connective tissue and increase a person’s risk of skin cancer. Most UVB rays are absorbed by the ozone layer, so they are less common at the earth’s surface than UVA rays. UVB rays, which help produce vitamin D in the skin, don’t reach as far into the skin as UVA rays, but they still can be damaging. UVC rays are very dangerous, but they are absorbed by the ozone layer and do not reach the ground. In addition to sunburn, too much exposure to UV rays can change skin texture, cause the skin to age prematurely, and can lead to skin cancer. UV rays also have been linked to eye conditions such as cataracts. The National Weather Service and the Environmental Protection Agency developed the UV Index to forecast the risk of overexposure to UV rays. It lets you know how much caution you should take when working, playing, or exercising outdoors. The UV Index predicts exposure levels on a 1 to 15 scale; higher levels indicate a higher risk of overexposure. Calculated on a next-day basis for dozens of cities across the United States, the UV Index takes into account clouds and other local conditions that affect the amount of UV rays reaching the ground. Basic Information What Are the Risk Factors? More Information Skin Cancer (National Cancer Institute) NCI Video: Minorities and Skin Cancer Awareness
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What Is Skin Cancer

What is it? Incidence How it develops What is skin cancer? Skin cancer is a broad term that refers to any type of cancer that begins in the cells of the skin. These cancers usually develop in the top layer of skin, also known as the epidermis. The most common types of skin cancer are basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma and melanoma. In addition, there are several types of skin cancers that occur much less frequently, including kaposi sarcoma, merkel cell carcinoma, cutaneous (skin) lymphoma, skin adnexal tumors and various types of sarcomas. Skin cancer incidence Each year, more 2 million cases of skin cancer are diagnosed in the United States, and the incidence is increasing. How skin cancer develops
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Skin cancers are cancers that arise from the skin. They are due to the development of abnormal cells that have the ability to invade or spread to other parts of the body. There are three main types of skin cancers: basal-cell skin cancer (BCC), squamous-cell skin cancer (SCC) and melanoma. The first two together along with a number of less common skin cancers are known as nonmelanoma skin cancer (NMSC). Basal-cell cancer grows slowly and can damage the tissue around it but is unlikely to spread to distant areas or result in death. It often appears as a painless raised area of skin, that may be shiny with small blood vessel running over it or may present as a raised area with an ulcer. Squamous-cell cancer is more likely to spread. It usually presents as a hard lump with a scaly top but may also form an ulcer. Melanomas are the most aggressive. Signs include a mole that has changed in size, shape, color, has irregular edges, has more than one color, is itchy or bleeds.