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.
To optimize prevention and skin health you need sun protection as much as you need vitamin D. You can have both and avoid either vitamin D deficiency and skin damage
In 2009 fears surrounding the risks of tanning were confirmed and today we know that skin cancers are associated with exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) radiation
When spending time outside in warm weather we may need using both insect repellents and sunscreens products
New Scientist Live, the world’s best science festival in ExCel London, is the stage to be launched FREE Download of HappySun app.
Tanning is a fairly recent trend and even today the ‘ideal’ skin colour varies among different cultures