Skin cancer – Can we spot it?
Skin cancer, nonmelanoma skin cancer (NMSC) and cutaneous malignant melanoma (CMM), is the most frequent cancer worldwide. Prevention is possible as it is amenable to early detection and diagnosis in first stages potentially reduce morbidity and mortality.
We all know that moles may turn to be dangerous being in fact a cancerous or pre-cancerous lesion.
As about everybody in adulthood has at least some moles, how can we know if they are dangerous?
The key symptom is changing. A cancerous mole will change in colour, size and shape over time.
A changing spot may be a problem, but not every change means a cancer. A mole may appear and then get bigger or become raised but still be only a mole.
A regular self- examination is useful to notice any new or changing cutaneous imperfections (some forms of skin cancer have little or no colour) and if it is the case to book a visit to the dermatologist. Nobody can diagnose him- or herself. If one sees a spot that looks as though it is new or changing it should be evaluated by a specialist.
People with one or more risk factors: photo-types I-II, history of intense and repeated sun exposure and sun burns (especially in childhood), many moles, relatives with history of skin cancer, should go for a screening and define with the doctor an appropriate schedule of checks.
Tanning is a fairly recent trend and even today the ‘ideal’ skin colour varies among different cultures
To enjoy sun when having fun with sport activities remember that sweating causes sunscreens effects vanishing very quickly
The commonly accepted tale says that the fashion icon Coco Chanel got accidentally burnt during a holiday and popularized the idea of sunbathing
Vitamin D is crucial to stay healthy. We all know it spurs bone growth and insufficient level of vitamin D can therefore trigger osteoporosis
Ultraviolet eye protection is important. UV exposure can lead to skin cancers in the eyes and on the eyelids and damage cornea, lens and other parts of the eye