Is Actinic Keratosis Skin Cancer?

Dermatologist examining birthmark of patient in clinic.

Are you concerned about an unusual patch of skin that has appeared on your body? Our dermatologists can provide you with a proper diagnosis and treatment plan, so it is important to come into our office for an evaluation. Dr. Stanley Skopit can see you at our office in Dania, FL, and educate you on your skin concerns. This includes the diagnosis and treatment of actinic keratosis.

What is Actinic Keratosis?

Actinic keratosis is a common premalignant skin lesion which alters the texture of the skin surface. Actinic keratosis usually appears as small, scaly patches on the skin that are rough to the touch. The patches may be red, tan, or white. They most often appear on sun-exposed areas of the body, such as the face, neck, hands, and arms.

What Causes Actinic Keratoses To Develop?

Actinic keratoses are caused by damage to the skin from ultraviolet (UV) rays. UV rays are found in sunlight and in the light emitted by tanning beds and sunlamps. Exposure to UV rays damages the DNA in skin cells. This damage can lead to the development of actinic keratoses. Treatment is important because actinic keratoses can develop into squamous cell skin cancer, the second most common type of skin cancer.

Is Actinic Keratosis Skin Cancer?

The short answer to the question is no; actinic keratosis is not skin cancer. However, it is a precancerous condition that can develop into skin cancer if left untreated. Treatment is available and can help to prevent the condition from progressing into a more serious issue. If you believe you have actinic keratosis, it is essential that you work with a dermatologist to monitor it over time or consider removal.

How Can Actinic Keratoses Be Treated?

If you have actinic keratoses, Dr. Stanley Skopit of Dania Dermatology may recommend a topical medication, cryotherapy (freezing), or photodynamic therapy. These treatments can help to prevent the condition from progressing to skin cancer.

How Do I Learn More About Actinic Keratoses and When To Take Action?

Patients in the Dania, FL area who are concerned about the development of actinic keratoses and need to undergo an evaluation are strongly encouraged to book a consultation visit with Dr. Stanley Skopit. Call Dania Dermatology at 954-807-9433 to request an appointment.

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