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Pictures Of Skin Cancer - Using Pictures of Skin Cancer for Self-Diagnosis

melanoma bump type cells

Many people don’t realize that, in humans, skin cancer is the most common type of cancer and one of the deadliest. A lot of attention is drawn to other forms of cancer such as lung cancer, breast cancer, and prostate cancer, but skin cancer has suffered from a lack of awareness more than any other type of cancer. This lack of awareness is not due to a lack of publicity efforts. The National Cancer Institute, the Skin Cancer Foundation, and numerous other organizations have overseen public service announcements and ad campaigns for decades trying to make people aware of the dangers of skin cancer. A few people have begun to listen, and self-exams for skin cancer using visual identification and comparisons with pictures of skin cancer have become more prevalent as a practiced preliminary means of early detection.

Skin cancer is defined as an abnormal skin cells that grow and multiply uncontrolled by the body’s standard regulation system. Because the skin is the largest of the human organs, the abnormal cells can easily spread to all parts of the body where they can interfere with the function of vital organs, leading to death.

There are three basic types of skin cancer:

Basal Cell Carcinoma – This is when the cells of the lower epidermis begin to grow abnormally and multiply. It is the most common form of skin cancer. Pictures of skin cancer of this type reveal a waxy or pearly bump that can be white, pink, brown, or remain flesh-colored. One indication of cancer is that the bump never heals and in some cases it can ooze, crust-over, or even bleed. This is considered a non-melanoma. It is easily treated and rarely causes problems if detected early. Patients relapse in only 1% to 10% of cases.

Squamous Cell Carcinoma – The squamous cells are located in the mid-epidermal layer. Pictures of skin cancer of this type show a bump on the skin that grows over time. The bump often has a rough surface and can form scales. In some cases it can create flat patches of red. The most common areas where it occurs are on face, neck, arms, and hands, but it can occur anywhere on the body. One sign that a lump may be squamous cell carcinoma is a mole or wart that changes shape or grows. This is also a non-melanoma cancer and, if detected early, can be effectively treated without permanent damage to the body. The relapse rate is 5%.

Melanoma – This is the most dangerous form of skin cancer, and most skin cancer deaths are caused by melanoma. Melanoma is the abnormal of growth of melanocyte cells. Melanocytes are the part of the skin responsible for creating the pigment, melanin, that colors the skin. Pictures of skin cancer of this type reveal a wide variety of forms this cancer can take. It usually appears as a mole, bump, sore, or other form of growth on the skin, but it can also appear flat but discolored. It can be colored red, brown, or black, blue, or purple. A warning that a colored mole-like growth is melanoma is if it changes appearance over time, it bleeds, it is asymmetrical in form, or has irregular edges. If detected early, it may be possible to cure the cancer through a series of treatments. Surgery alone will not remove the cancer, unlike non-melanoma cancers. Melanoma can penetrate deeply and in later stages is considered to be incurable.

Before you perform a self-examination for skin cancer, educate yourself on what to look for by viewing pictures of skin cancer online or from any piece of literature put out by anti-cancer organizations. The exam is best done after a shower in a room with full lighting. You should be able to identify all of your usual birthmarks, moles, and blemishes, so you can detect if you have anything new. Use a full-length mirror and a hand-mirror so that you can check all parts of your body. If you detect any new blemishes or lumps that match the pictures of skin cancer, you should see your general practitioner or your dermatologist as soon as possible for a professional diagnosis.

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