Skin Cancer TampaBeing the body's largest organ, the skin requires a good deal of attention and routine care. Due to the inability to hide the skin, there are constant "attacks" from the outside world. One of the most impactful factors in skin health is UV exposure. Ultraviolet rays from the sun as well as from tanning beds can be highly damaging to the skin, leading to premature aging and, more concerning, skin cancer. It is estimated that approximately one in every five people in our country will be diagnosed with some form of skin cancer. When you live in a sunny, warm climate like we have in Florida, sun protection and skin cancer prevention is even more important.
Obviously, you do not live in a place like Tampa because you want to stay indoors more often than not. Residents of St. Petersburg, Downtown Tampa, Hyde Park and other cities tend to enjoy a great deal of time outside. We encourage patients to visit us on a routine basis for skin cancer screenings that will enable us to help them enjoy a lifetime of health and wellness.
Types of skin cancer
- Basal cell carcinoma is the most frequently occurring form of skin cancer diagnosed today. Related to sun exposure, this cancer may develop on areas such as the shoulders, chest, face and neck, hands and arms and even the feet and legs. In many cases, it will look like a pimple that never fully forms but doesn't go away. Due to their tendency to progress and grow larger over time, basal cell carcinomas should be removed through the appropriate dermatologic surgery.
- Squamous cell carcinoma is also related to UV exposure. These lesions may be seen on legs and feet, hands and arms, the face, neck, ears, lips and even the scalp. They often appear crusty or scaly in their early form. Eventually, these carcinomas progress to a sore or bump that does not go away. Early detection and treatment of squamous cell carcinoma is vital to health and life.
- Melanoma is the type of skin cancer that causes the greatest amount of concern. While extremely dangerous, this type of skin cancer is also the least common. It is not necessarily related to sun exposure, so patients are taught to check all areas of the body for suspicious lesions and growths. It is possible for melanoma to develop internally as well as on the skin. Most often, however, we see this form of skin cancer as a mutation of pigmented cells that is triggered by UV exposure. For this reason, sun protection should be routinely practiced.
We can help you prevent or address skin cancer quickly and with conservative care. Contact us today to arrange your screening with Dr. Milan Lombardi.