Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer in the United States. The American Cancer Society estimates that approximately one million people are diagnosed with skin cancer each year. The three most common types of skin cancer include squamous cell carcinoma, basal cell carcinoma, and malignant melanoma.
The biggest risk factor for developing skin cancer is exposure to ultra-violet radiation from sunlight or tanning booths. It is important to apply sun block to the skin to help reduce the risk of developing skin cancer. SPF of 15 or greater has been found to give the best protection. It is also important to perform skin self-examinations. Note any change in the size, shape, color, surface (scaly, pearly or crusty appearance) and borders of a mole or area of skin. If you have any concerns, always consult a physician.
Treatment options include surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy and immunotherapy. At Radiotherapy Clinics of Georgia, we provide radiation therapy for all types of skin cancer. Depending on the location of the skin cancer, radiation therapy to the area may result in a better cosmetic and functional outcome than surgery. Radiation therapy treatment is given daily to the area to kill the cancer cells. Side effects of the radiation treatment include redness or darkening of the skin and tenderness of the skin in the treatment area.
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