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Early Detection

How to Treat

Early detection is key to the prevention of metastasis in every type of skin cancer. Self inspections should be performed monthly, and should include examination of the face, scalp, torso, back, arms, hands, legs, feet and nails. The presence of any new growth or formation should be reported to a physician immediately. In addition to self examinations, yearly visits to a dermatologist should be scheduled for a thorough, full-body exam. Aestheticians should develop a relationship with a trusted dermatologist close to their facility and a mutual referral process for their clients. Until skin cancer affects a patient personally or someone close to them, they may not understand the importance of prevention and detection. Education is the most valuable tool the skin care professional can provide. If at any time a patient has any type of questionable lesion, immediately refer them to a dermatologist for evaluation and, if necessary, treatment.

If a lesion appears suspicious to a physician, they will remove a portion and perform a biopsy. If skin cancer is diagnosed there are several available treatment methods, and the physician will choose the most appropriate option for each individual case based on type of tumor and location. Treatment options include electrodesiccation and curettage (burning and scraping off the tumor), topical chemotherapy and several different methods of surgical excision.

Mohs micrographic surgery is considered the most effective treatment method for cosmetically sensitive areas, with the highest cure rate of up to 97% and least likely to scar. Mohs surgeons are highly trained and remove as little tissue as possible, testing each layer for malignancies and halting surgery once the tissue is tumor-free. Once the tumor has been completely removed, cosmetic reconstructive surgery can be done.