The latest skin cancer treatments.
Greensboro’s Basal Cell Carcinoma Experts
Your outer layer of skin, called the epidermis, is itself composed of several layers. Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is a form of skin cancer that develops in cells of the epidermis’ bottom layer. BCC forms as a response to damage in normal basal cells, which allows them to grow and reproduce out of control. Usually, the damage that leads to BCC comes in the form of UV light from the sun or tanning equipment.
BCC is the most common type of skin cancer found in the U.S., with over 3.5 million cases diagnosed every year. And BCC cases are continuing to increase year after year. With this increase in mind, it’s important to learn as much as you can about this common cancer so you can reduce your risk and ensure the health of your skin.
Basal Cell Carcinoma FAQs
Read our board-certified dermatologist’s answers to frequently asked questions about basal cell carcinoma below, and contact us to schedule your annual skin cancer screening!
Basal cell carcinoma is typically caused by exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays, most often from the sun or tanning beds. It’s crucial to take steps to reduce your risk, such as daily sunscreen use, avoiding the sun at peak times of the day, wearing protective clothing (including sunglasses), and avoiding tanning beds.
Basal cell carcinoma comes with a few warning signs and symptoms to keep an eye on, such as:
- An open sore that heals and reappears, or a skin lesion that never seems to fully heal
- Red, irritated patches
- Pink growths, which may be elevated
- A lesion that looks like a pimple, keeps getting larger, and occasionally bleeds
- A shiny, translucent, or pearly nodule
- Growths with raised, rolled edges and/or indentations in the center
Basal cell carcinomas may crust over, ooze, itch, or bleed. In patients with darker skin, about half of these cancers are brown in color. BCCs typically appear in sun-exposed areas of the body, commonly the face, lips, ears, hands, and forearms.
Basal cell carcinomas can be dangerous if left untreated, as they will continue to grow and invade deeper tissues, eventually reaching bone. In advanced cases, BCC can be disfiguring, and in some very rare cases could even be fatal.
An irritated, reddish patch that begins to itch or hurt can be a warning sign of basal cell carcinoma. If you’ve noticed any new changes in your skin, it’s best to have them checked out by a board-certified dermatologist for a skin cancer screening!
In most cases, basal cell carcinoma is a slow-growing skin cancer that does not spread to other organ systems. However, the longer they’re left alone, the more risk develops that they will metastasize, or spread, most often to the local lymph nodes or lungs.
Dr. McCarthy and his team are highly experienced in several different basal cell carcinoma treatment methods. We’ll determine the best approach once we perform a thorough evaluation.
Your treatment plan may include:
- Mohs Surgery
- Excisional surgery
- Curettage and electrodesiccation (electrosurgery)
- Photodynamic therapy
- Laser surgery
- Topical medications
To learn more about the different skin cancer treatment options we offer Greensboro residents, please get in touch with our clinic.
Basal Cell Carcinoma Photos
Not sure what basal cell carcinoma looks like? Browse our photo gallery to get more familiar with how this form of skin cancer may appear on your body. If you have any doubts at all about a spot, please get in touch with our team today!
Basal Cell Carcinoma Diagnosis & Treatment in Greensboro, NC
Have you noticed a suspicious spot on your skin that you want to have checked out? Or have you already been diagnosed with basal cell carcinoma and are looking for skin cancer treatment options?
At Brassfield Dermatology, Dr. Sean McCarthy and his team are highly experienced in diagnosing and treating all forms of skin cancer. To schedule your consultation and screening, call (336) 900-1525 or request an appointment online.