Most Common Mistake Made When Applying Sunscreen

June 3, 2011 by  
Filed under VIDEO

I just found this health related video on YouTube … and thought you might enjoy it! Concealer. Cleanser. Sunscreen. Blush. Moisturizer. The list of ointments and makeup that women can apply to their face goes on and on, and the order in which they should be applied isn’t so intuitive. Should you apply your sunscreen first or last? What about everything else? Dr. Schultz will explain the proper order for applying everything and why. Transcription The most common mistake that women make in using their sunscreen is not putting it on first on their skin before their moisturizer and their make-up. Many women think, and I understand, that if their sunscreen is closer to the sun on top of their other products, then it will work better and protect them better from the sun. But the reality is, for sunscreens to work, they have to be the first thing applied to the skin because they have to bind to the skin, and there’s a chemical reaction that occurs that makes the sunscreen effective. So please put your sunscreen on first, then apply your moisturizer and then apply your make-up.

Tell us what you think about this video in the comments below, or in the Battling For Health Community Forum!

Summery Christmas down under

December 27, 2010 by  
Filed under CANCER

Sun, sun, warm sun. We had a great time here down under on Christmas Day with 25°C temperatures. Lazing around on the beach or by pool. Hmmm, I haven’t done that in a while.

The sun is such a paradox. It is the source of life. It is the best source of the essential vitamin D. It is also the main cause of skin cancer, most especially melanoma. Once again, this is proof that too much of a good can be bad for your health.

So while the American Heart Association and other health groups are actively campaigning for people to get out and be active in the northern hemisphere freezing temperatures, Australian advocacy groups are campaigning for people to protect themselves from the sun through the SunSmart campaign.

Australia has among the highest rates of skin cancer in the world. According to the Cancer Council ACT of Australia:

  • More than 1850 Australians will die from skin cancer each year.
  • Two out of 3 Australians will develop skin cancer by the age of 70.

Coming from the cold wintery north, we sometimes are unprepared for the intensity of the sun down south. The ACT gives us the “5 S’s”- SunSmart tips that will help us remember how to protect ourselves from the sun.

Slip on some sun-protective clothing that covers as much skin as possible.

Slop on SPF30+ broad-spectrum sunscreen. Always use in combination with the other sun protection measures. Reapply every 2 hours.

Slap on a hat that protects your face, head, neck and ears.

Slide on some sunglasses. A close fitting, wrap-around style will offer best protection. Sunglasses should meet Australian

Seek shade whenever possible.

Still, there are conflicts of interests that can hamper the SunSmart campaign. The Australian province of Victoria is having problems with the many summer festivals currently ongoing. The festivals are very popular among the young people but for security reason, liquids are not allowed in the festival locations and are confiscated at entry points. Thus, sunscreens are confiscated.

SunSmart manager Sue Heward appeals to the festival organizers:

“We implore festival organisers to put in place a UV policy that ensures their patrons are supplied with sunscreen, whether it be at a number of different easy-to-access locations around the festival area, and/or roving sunscreen sellers or that there is an exception to the no liquids allowed policy allowing patrons to bring their own.”

Sunscreen: friend or foe?

July 14, 2009 by  
Filed under CANCER

suncreamSunscreens are supposed to protect our skin from the sun’s UV rays, thereby lowering the risk for skin cancer, especially the deadly melanoma. Now come these claims that sunscreens actually do just the opposite. Let us examine the evidence.

Many sunscreens contain zinc oxide and titanium oxide, compounds that are supposed to block the UV rays. Some studies suggest, however, that these compounds produce free radicals when exposed to sunlight, leading to cell damage.

In 2000, Swedish researchers  looked at 571 people with cutaneous malignant melanoma and compared them to 913 people without skin cancer (healthy controls). The analysis showed that the melanoma incidence was significantly associated with regular sunscreen use.

Many people are quick to conclude that it was the sunscreen that caused the melanoma. However, the researchers emphasized on the following key points:

  • The study was conducted during the 1990s when the sun protection factor (SPFs) for sunscreens was generally low. The SPF used by the study participants ranged from 2 to 25, with a median of 6.
  • Those who used sunscreens reported to have stayed longer under the sun.
  • The increased melanoma risk was especially significant among those who used products with SPF of 10 or lower and among men.

The study concluded

Our results are probably related mainly to earlier sunscreens of low SPF. They substantiate the hypothesis that sunscreen use, by permitting more time sunbathing, is associated with melanoma occurrence.

A 2007 review by French researchers gave the following information:

  • Frequent sunscreen users are usually those with higher natural sensitivity to the sun.
  • Sunscreen use led to longer exposure to the sun among people who did this intentionally in order to get a tan.

It seems that sunscreen use as such doesn’t increase the risk for melanoma. However, the tendency of people to stay longer under the sun, believing that their sunscreen provides them complete protection from UV rays does play a role in increasing the risk.

There have been changes in sunscreen labelling to give consumers more accurate and less misleading information about sunscreen. Especially important is the fact that the SPF of your sunscreen does not necessarily tell you how long you can stay in the sun. It depends on so many factors including skin type, geographic location, time of the day, and weather conditions.

In addition, a broad-spectrum sunscreen, one that filters UV A as well as UV B rays has been shown to “provide better protection from solar ultraviolet-simulated radiation and natural sunlight-induced immunosuppression in human beings.”

Photo credit: stock.xchng

Summer is coming: how to prevent and check for melanoma

May 6, 2009 by  
Filed under CANCER

sunflower_fieldResource Post for May

In preparation for the summer season, there are health observances in May that are focusing on awareness about skin cancer.

May is Melanoma/Skin Cancer Detection and Prevention Month and May 4 was Melanoma Monday and sponsored by the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD).

Identifying melanoma

It is estimated that 1 million cases of skin cancer is diagnosed in the US each year. About one in five Americans will develop skin cancer in their lifetime. Of all types of skin cancers, melanoma is the most deadly, commonly affecting young adults aged 25 to 29 years of age.

Melanoma is characterized by pigment-producing cells that grow and reproduce uncontrollably. It may suddenly on the skin or may develop on an existing mole. According to researchers at St. Louis University, the identifying signs of melanoma are:

Who is at risk of developing melanoma?

Current guidelin1045672_cheeky_monkey_2es recommend regular screening for skin cancer, especially those at high risk for the disease. The risk factors include

  • People older 40 years of age
  • People with a fair complexion
  • People who sunburn easily
  • People who have many moles
  • People with a personal or family history of skin cancer
  • People who spend long periods of time exposed to the sun
  • People exposed to UV radiation at recreation or the work place, e.g. use of tanning salons, sunbathing, etc.

However, just because you are of the dark-haired, dark-skinned type, and you never sunburn easily doesn’t mean you don’t have to worry about UV radiation. According to a study presented at the annual meeting of the American Association of Cancer Research (AACR), certain variants of the MC1R gene increase the melanoma risk of people who are normally of low risk profile by almost two-fold. The study was presented by researchers from the Pennsylvania University.

How do we prevent skin cancer?

Here are simple tips on skin cancer prevention.

Use sunblock. It is advisable to use sun protection, even in children. Regular use of sunblock during the first 18 years of one’s life can reduce the lifetime risk by 78%. Use sunscreens whicsuncreamh blocks UV A as well as UV B radiation. For it to be effective, a sunscreen must have a minimum sun protection factor (SPF) of 15.

Stay out of the midday sun. UV radiation is strongest at midday. Enjoy th early morning or late afternoon sun instead.

Have regular skin cancer screenings. Free skin cancer screenings are being offered by health and advocacy groups. The American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) offers free screening all over the US. You can request a notification from the AAD when there is a scheduled screening within a 50-mile radius from where you live. You can also send an eCard to family and friends to help spread awareness on skin cancer and inform about free screenings.

Do a self-check for skin cancer. By using the abovementioned signs for melanoma, you can check yourself and your family for suspicious pigmentation. The AAD also gives us instructions on how to perform a skin self-exam.

Avoid suntanning beds. Even artificial UV rays from suntanning lamps and beds can cause skin cancer.

The latest research news on skin cancer

Researchers from St. Louis Unisunbedversity report on the effectiveness of a topical cream in treating certain melanoma. The researchers used the cream imiquimod in treating lentigo maligna (LM) which the most common type of melanoma of the head and neck. LM is “a type of “melanoma-in- situ”, the earliest stage of melanoma [which] precedes the more invasive form, lentigo maligna melanoma (LMM).” Imiquimod was used in conjunction with surgery. Skin surgery removed the invasive area while the topical cream was applied in the surrounding area. The cream supposedly can supposedly limit the area of surgery as well as minimize disfigurement and the risk of recurrence.

According to lead researcher Dr. Scott Fosko, chairman of the department of dermatology at Saint Louis University School of Medicine

“As we’re seeing melanoma in younger and younger people, in their 30s and 40s, there is a longer window for the cancer to return and a greater desire to avoid disfiguring surgery…This subtype of melanoma is becoming more and more common, and can be one of the more challenging melanomas to manage”.

In lab tests, researchers at the M. D. Anderson Cancer Center demonstrated that that the yellow spice curcumin which is also found turmeric and curry powder seems to be able to block the pathway to melanoma development.

Is skin cancer on the rise?

January 22, 2009 by  
Filed under CANCER

The incidence of skin cancer is increasing. And this increase is not only due to better screening and diagnostic techniques. The threat is real and not just an artefact of better technology, according to researchers at the Stanford University Medical Center in California.

This rise of skin cancer incidence has been reported both in the US and Europe. In the US, the increase is on average, 3.1% each year, from 1992 to 2004.

The Stanford researchers argue that improved screening methods will detect more skin tumors which are thinner and most likely to be benign, the kind that were easily missed before the new methods were introduced. However,

“after assessing 70,596 previously documented cases of cancer diagnosed between 1992 and 2004 in the United States, they found that there were significantly more cases of tumours of all thicknesses”.

Another indication of skin cancer increase is the fact that the rise is evident in all socioeconomic groups, not only among those who belong to higher income groups in the US and therefore have better access to health care and insurance coverage.

The findings of the two studies indicate that skin cancer is indeed on the rise.

Skin cancer incidence reports are quite controversial, because the disease is closely associated to exposure to the sun. In recent years, there is a rapid increase in vitamin D deficiency the world over because people tend to avoid sun exposure for fear of skin cancer. However, vitamin D deficiency has been linked to a variety to chronic conditions, including cardiovascular problems, osteoporosis, neurodegenerative disorders, as well as pregnancy complications.

According to lead researcher Eleni Linos

Over the past 100 years, people are really changing the amount of time they spend in the sun, the clothes they wear, and whether their hobbies and work are indoor or outdoor.” This has been confounded by the thinning of the ozone layer which led to “increased exposure to ultraviolet light or a longer-term increase in the genetic susceptibility to cancer.”

According to the Medline Medical Encyclopedia,

Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States. The two most common types are basal cell cancer and squamous cell cancer. They usually form on the head, face, neck, hands and arms. Another type of skin cancer, melanoma, is more dangerous but less common.

  • skin cancer commonly occurs in people who
  • have light-colored skin, hair and eyes
  • are older than 50 years old
  • family history of skin cancer
  • spend a lot of time outdoors in the sun.

Photo credit: stock. xchng

Worth Repeating: No Such Thing as a Safe Tan

September 23, 2008 by  
Filed under CANCER

Last week headlines across the globe shared the same note on the notion of safe tanning. All headlines seemed to agree.

There is no guarantee that indoor tanning is safe.

From WebMD, September 18, 2008. Healthy Tanning Beds? Experts Say No

Skin Cancer Researchers Oppose Industry Campaign to Portray Tanning Beds as Healthy –“..arguing that there may be no such thing as a safe tan, Society of Melanoma Research President David E. Fisher, MD, PhD, and colleagues accuse the industry of trying to confuse the public about the health benefits of tanning.”

While tanning bed are less likely to cause burns there is no doubt that UV radiation still leads to melanoma and the side effects of premature aging (wrinkles and drying of the skin), eye damage and immune suppression.

The FDA states the following:

  • There is no such thing as a safe tan. The increase in skin pigment, called melanin, which causes the tan color change in your skin is a sign of damage.
  • Once skin is exposed to UV radiation, it increases the production of melanin in an attempt to protect the skin from further damage.
  • Getting a tan will not protect your skin from sunburn or other skin damage. The extra melanin in tanned skin provides a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of about 2 to 4; far below the minimum recommended SPF of 15.

So consider these facts:

The American Cancer Society says that people 35 or younger who used tanning beds regularly had a melanoma risk eight-fold higher than people who never used tanning beds. Even occasional use among that age group almost tripled the chances of developing melanoma.

What is melanoma?

Melanoma is a type of cancer that forms in the melanocyte cells, which are the cells that form the melanin or pigment of the skin. Melanoma is less common than other skin cancers, but is the most serious type of skin cancer. Like other skin cancers, it is often curable in the early stages. It can occur anywhere on the skin, but most likely occurs in the trunk of men and the legs of women. The face and neck are also common sites. Melanoma can spread to other parts of the body.

Prevention can be as simple as understanding the UV light index for your area, limiting UV exposure (including tanning beds), wearing sunglasses, protective clothing and sunscreen and. Mole inspection and removal is another important facet of the prevention of melanoma.

The National Cancer Institute estimates that in the U.S. in 2008 there will be 62,480 new cases of melanoma and 8,420 melanoma deaths.

Is it worth the risk?

Vans Warped Tour Fighting Cancer

July 22, 2008 by  
Filed under CANCER

What’s the Vans Warped Tour got to do with cancer?

First for the uninformed:

You may be familiar with Vans as primarily the maker of those great checkerboard slip ons worn by Sean Penn in Fast Times at Ridgemont High.

The company (making skateboarding shoes since 1966) also makes a variety of other footwear and accessories primarily geared to skateboarders, snowboarders, BMX riders and Motocross enthusiasts. Check them out at

The Vans Warped Tour began in 1995 and is a combination multi-stage concert, festival and skateboarding exposition/competition.

This year’s Warped Tour will be hitting 46 cities across the United States and Canada.

(check out the schedule )

One of the great things about the tour is the huge non-profit benefit. This year’s tour teams up with 16 organizations including, Boarding for Cancer and the newest affiliation with Astron Clinica to provide free skin cancer screenings to attendees of the tour. MoleMate skin cancer screening system will be used to raise awareness of skin cancer in youth.

Read the press release here.

More on MoleMate:

MoleMate System helps the practitioner identify skin cancer and make clinical decisions based on technology that evaluates and measures melanin, haemoglobin and collagen in the top 2mm of the skin.

Learn more about this patented technology at the Astron Clinica site.

Skin Cancer Facts From the American Academy of Dermatology:

  • Over 1 million new cases of skin cancer will be diagnosed in the United States alone in 2008
  • 1 in 5 Americans will develop skin cancer in their life
  • Melanoma is the most common type of cancer for young adults 25-29 years of age
  • Melanoma is the second most common cancer for young adults 15-29 years of age
  • Melanoma is increasing faster in females 15-29 (possibly due to high risk tanning behavior)
  • One American dies of melanoma almost every hour
  • Melanoma diagnosed in individuals 10-39 is highly curable with a five-year survival rate exceeding 90 percent

So find a concert date near you and get the screening!!

Read more

Being Sun Smart Across the Globe

June 24, 2008 by  
Filed under CANCER


Sun Smart Campaigns are taking place from Australia to the U.S.

Take a peek at a few videos from all over the world:

Did you know that Australia has the highest incidence of skin cancer in the world? According the Cancer Council of Victoria, over 1,600 Australians die from skin cancer each year.

Summer began in February for this country and the Cancer Council of Australia kicked off summer with marie claire magazine’s launch of the SunSmart campaign together with 17 Aussie designers as part of their 150th issue to raise awareness of sun safety. All profits from the sale go to the Cancer Council. “17 designers created limited edition items like sunnies, hats, beach towels and even Swarovski-studded wedges for Australians to get the message: stay in the shade, slop on some sunscreen, and slap on a hat.”

Back in the U.S., Major League Baseball, the Major League Baseball Players Association and the American Academy of Dermatology are kicking off the Play Sun Smart Campaign to Strike Out Skin Cancer by raising awareness about skin cancer and offer detection and prevention tips for baseball player, team staff and fans.

Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer in the United States according to the Center for Disease Control, (CDC) who gives risk factors for skin cancer:

  • Lighter natural skin color.
  • Family history of skin cancer.
  • Personal history of skin cancer.
  • Exposure to the sun through work and play.
  • A history of sunburns early in life.
  • Skin that burns, freckles, reddens easily, or becomes painful in the sun.
  • Blue or green eyes.
  • Blond or red hair.
  • Certain types and a large number of moles.

Read more

Skin Cancer: The Naked Truth

May 7, 2008 by  
Filed under CANCER

May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month.

Skin Cancer includes

  • Basal Cell Carcinoma
  • Squamous Cell Carcinoma
  • Melanoma

Last month Battling Cancer covered Melanoma in an exclusive post you can find in the archives.

The National Cancer Institute estimates there will be more than 1,000,000 newly diagnosed cases of non melanoma skin cancers in the U.S. in 2008 and less than 1,000 deaths.

Defining the other skin cancers:

Basal Cell Carcinoma is the most common type of skin cancer and most easily treated and begins in the basal level of the skin or epidermis. This cancer grows slowly and rarely spreads, unless left untreated. It is not uncommon for it to recur in the same spot. Per the Mayo Clinic, it usually appears this way:

  • pearly or waxy bump on your face, ears or neck
  • A flat, flesh-colored or brown scar-like lesion on your chest or back

Squamous Cell Carcinoma occurs upper level of the epidermis and may spread to the fatty tissue and to the lymph nodes if left untreated. The first stage of squamous cell carcinoma may be a precancerous lesion called actinic keratosis. Per The May Clinic it usually appears this way:

  • A firm, red nodule on your face, lips, ears, neck, hands or arms
  • A flat lesion with a scaly, crusted surface on your face, ears, neck, hands or arms

Risk Factors for non Melanoma Skin Cancer:

  • UV light exposure-natural and artificial and a history of severe sunburns
  • Fair Skin-occurs more often in people with fair skin, freckles and light hair
  • Immune Suppression-a weakened immune system due to other factors
  • Sex-Men have a higher incidence
  • History of skin cancer
  • Chemicals-exposure to arsenic, tar, coal, and paraffin
  • Exposure to radiation
  • HPV infection
  • Smoking
  • History of skin diseases that impair the ability of the skin to repair or increases risks of sunburn
  • Rare condition called Basal Cell Nevus Syndrome

Prevention includes knowing your UV index and regulation of sun exposure, using sunscreen, protective clothing and avoiding tanning beds, and chemicals related to risk.

The Environmental Protection Agency, (EPA) provides an easy website, as part of their SunWise Program to determine the UV index for your area of the U.S. so you can take preventative measures to regulate your exposure.

Cancer Research UK, provides links to the UV index for different parts of the UK and Europe.

Diagnosis and Treatment:

Early detection is the key and this involves regular physical exams to assess your skin. Diagnosis will determine if skin cancer is local or metastasized and will stage the cancer. This is done by biopsy.

Treatment options may include:

  • chemotherapy-may include a topical cream
  • radiation
  • cryosurgery-freezing the cells and removing them
  • excision-cutting out the cancer
  • laser therapy-utilizing a beam of light to vaporize the cancer cells.
  • curettage and electrodesiccation-scraping cancer cells with a blade and using a needle
  • Mohs surgery-done by a specialist usually for recurring or larger skin cancer. A doctor removes the cancer cells layer by layer

Further Resources:

The Skin Cancer Connection . com offers an informative article on topical skin cancer treatments.

Skin Cancer Basics from M.D. Anderson

May Skin Cancer Events:

As part of May, Skin Cancer Awareness Month, The American Society for Dermatologic Surgery and Olay has teamed up to offer free screenings with a dermatologic surgeon for you and a friend. The initiative, Skin Cancer Takes Friends can be seen in magazine ads (such as MORE magazine), and features actress Marcia Cross. For more details see the website.


The Skin Cancer Foundation Road to a Healthy Skin Tour may be in your neighborhood soon. The customized Winnebago starts off at the Today Show in NYC on May 2 and then heads across the U.S. giving free skin exams provided by local board certified dermatologists. The tour is sponsored by Aveeno, Rite Aid and Columbia Sportswear. Check the site to see the tour dates and locations.

Battling Books:

The Eggplant Cancer Cure: A Treatment for Skin Cancer and New Hope for Other Cancers from Nature's PharmacyThe Eggplant Cancer Cure: A Treatment for Skin Cancer, and New Hope for Other Cancers From Nature’s Pharmacy by Bill Cham (2008)

Skin Cancer by Robert A. Schwartz (2008)

Skin Cancer by Keyvan Nouri (2007)

100 Questions & Answers about Melanoma & Other Skin Cancers by Edward F. McClay, Mary-Eileen T. McClay, and Jodie Smith (2004)

The M Word

April 17, 2008 by  
Filed under CANCER


A type of cancer that forms in the melanocyte cells, which are the cells that form the melanin or pigment of the skin. Melanoma is less common than other skin cancers, but is the most serious type of skin cancer. Like other skin cancers, it is often curable in the early stages. It can occur anywhere on the skin, but most likely occurs in the trunk of men and the legs of women. The face and neck are also common sites. Melanoma can spread to other parts of the body.

Risk Factors May Include:

  • UV light exposure-natural and artificial and a history of severe sunburns
  • Moles-excessive number of normal moles (over 50) and large number of atypical moles (dysplastic nevi)
  • Fair Skin-occurs more often in people with fair skin, freckles and light hair
  • Family History-10% of all people diagnosed have a family history
  • Immune Suppression-a weakened immune system due to other factors
  • Age-the most common cancer in people younger than 30, but more likely to occur in older populations
  • Sex-Men have a higher incidence
  • History of Melanoma-people who have had melanoma are at greater risk for a second diagnosis
  • Xeroderma Pigmentosum-a rare inherited genetic condition that prevents the skin from repairing

For more information on risk factors see the American Cancer Society site.

Read more

Educate Yourself About Skin Cancer

July 23, 2007 by  
Filed under CANCER

By: Keefe Figgatt

People refer to cancer as “The Big C”. While it may seem as though all forms of the disease fall under one main categorization, there are actually more than 100 ailments that may be considered to be “cancer”. Every type is different, but all are related to diseased cells in the body.

Healthy cells grow, divide and replace themselves on a continual basis. That’s how the body’s tissue is created, and it’s how a healthy body grows, repairs itself and stays in good health. Cancer occurs when some of these cells lose their ability to perform these tasks. The duplication, progress and growth capability of the cells is limited. The cells may divide themselves too rapidly, and may grow without organization. Malignant or benign tumors are formed when the cancerous cells produce too much tissue.

Benign tumors do not lead to cancer. They do not extend to the rest of the body and are not life threatening. These type of tumors are usually removed via surgery and usually do not return. They are often more of a nuisance than a threat.

Malignant tumors are those that can lead to cancer. These cancerous tumors cause further illness in the body by invading nearby organs and destroying healthy tissues. Malignant tumors can metastasize or spread to other organs, causing new tumors to grow throughout the body.

The two main kinds of skin cancer are basal cell carcinoma and Squamous cell carcinoma. A carcinoma is the term used to describe a cancer that begins in the cells that cover or surround an organ.

In the United States, basal cell carcinoma accounts for more than 90 percent of all skin cancers. Basal cell carcinoma grows slowly, and it rarely spreads to other areas. Regardless, it’s important that all types of skin cancer are found early and promptly treated, preventing them from invading and destroying nearby tissues.

Squamous cell carcinoma and basal cell carcinoma are usually referred to as nonmelanoma skin cancer. Melanoma is another form of skin cancer which begins in the melanocytes.

The most common types of cancer in the United States are skin cancers. It’s estimated that 40 to 50 percent of people who live to be 65 or older in the United States will develop skin cancer at least once in their lifetime. Even so, people of all ages and every nationality are at risk of developing skin cancer. People with blue or light colored eyes, those with freckles or fair skin, and people with blond or red hair present a higher risk of developing skin cancer.

The sun’s UV (ultraviolet) radiation is the most common cause of skin cancer. The sun creates two types of ultraviolet radiation: UVA and UVB. Tanning booths and sun beds create artificial UV radiation, and will also cause skin cancer.

The location where a person lives plays a role in the risks of developing skin cancer. People live in areas where they are exposed to high levels of UV radiation and are more likely to develop skin cancer. For example, the Texas sun is especially strong. There are also high rates of skin cancer found in South Africa and Australia where the populations get excessive amounts of the sun’s radiation.

Article Source

Writer Keefe Figgatt works for several well-known web sites, on health products and natural product issues.
Don’t reprint the same version as everyone else. Get your own unique content skin cancer article here.

Five Kinds of Skin Cancer

April 16, 2007 by  
Filed under CANCER

By Ron Keegan

Learn self-examination of skin cancer, as a way to protect yourself, that is easy and costs you nothing more than a few minutes of your time once every few months.

It’s really a good idea to probe a little deeper into the subject of skin cancer. What you learn may give you the confidence you need to spot, the first signs of skin cancer.

There are five different kinds of skin cancer. All of them are dangerous though some are to be worried about more than others. The most common type of skin cancer is Basal cell carcinoma with over a million Americans developing this cancer each year.

Seventy five percent of all skin cancers treated are of this variety. This type of skin cancer is believed by physicians to be caused by a person spending too much time in the sun. Which is why this type of skin cancers tends to be found ion the more common places on the body that has sun exposure. This includes the face, scalp, and upper torso.

Although they have more than one form basal cell carcinoma often begins like a shiny bump. It takes the form of a sore that does not heal or that heals and then becomes unhealthy looking once again. These are slow growing; rarely spreading to other parts of the body but still must be attended to quickly.

At least two hundred thousand Americans yearly are treated for Squamous cell carcinoma, this is the second most common and accounts for twenty percent of the cases of skin cancer. This one is also blamed on too much sun but is more common among middle aged and the elderly.

They first appear as a crusty spot, but one with that appears reddened and irritated looking and does look very much like a small growth or boil. If you notice something that looks like this go immediately to your health care provider as Squamous cell carcinoma can spread to other parts of your body.

The next in line is the most dangerous of the skin cancers. That one is Melanoma and it affects four percent of those who are treated for skin cancers. It is considered the most dangerous because it is the most lethal.

Although if found early the cure rate is a stunning ninety five percent effective. But once it begins its spread there is very little hope. So if you see changes to a mole or a new mole, especially if you are over thirty, see your health care provider immediately.

The remaining one percent if divided between Paget,s disease and Kaposi,s sarcoma. Paget,s occurs because of cancers in the sweat glands of the intestines, genitals or urinary tract and so the cancer shows up in the genital area or around the anus.

It can also come out around the nipples because of cancer of the milk ducts though both men and women can have this problem. The sores look a like normal patchy skin, rashes, and can be very itchy or even painful. A biopsy is usually needed to determine if its just a skin condition or its Paget,s. Kaposi,s sarcoma is an AIDS related skin cancer related to herpes.

For more skin cancer information visit signs of skin cancer

Ron Keegan is a successful Webmaster and publisher of a Health Directory with up to date information on health issues.

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NOTE: The contents in this blog are for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as medical advice, diagnosis, treatment or a substitute for professional care. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health professional before making changes to any existing treatment or program. Some of the information presented in this blog may already be out of date.