Cancer - Oncology

Prevention Tips

Patients whose skin cancer is caught early and who receive treatment dramatically increase their chances of being cured. Even melanoma, which in some cases can be fatal, has a cure rate of almost 100 percent when treated early.

What outcome can you expect if you have skin cancer?

The best prevention is a combination of personal and professional screenings together with avoiding exposure conditions that are considered risks for skin cancer—sun and tanning beds, for example. Even after you receive a clean bill of health and your doctor declare you cancer-free, you need to continue to see your dermatologist on a regular basis for check-ups. And, once you get skin cancer, the risk of getting another skin cancer goes up.

Early treatment is very important as a preventative measure for two reasons. First, over time, skin cancer can grow deeply into body tissue at its original site. When this happens, cutting out the cancer can mean cutting out muscle and even bone. In these cases, you may need extensive reconstructive surgery. Second, if left untreated, skin cancer can spread to other parts of body and vital organs. When that happens, treatment is sometimes not effective.

What you can do right now to reduce your risk of getting skin cancer?

  • Avoid direct sunlight between 10 am and 4 pm.
  • Cover up in bright sunshine.
  • Protect yourself with sunscreen or sunblock if you spend time outdoors.

Follow these two easy steps that can help reduce the risk of skin cancer:

Step 1: Regularly check the skin all over your body for any abnormalities that last two weeks or longer and is either growing, changing shape, bleeding, or itching.

Step 2: If you detect any change, make an appointment with a dermatologist for a skin cancer check.