Skin cancer is a general term that is applied to several different types of cancers. Of the different types of skin cancers, squamous cell carcinoma is one of the most common.
Squamous cell carcinoma is an aggressive form of skin cancer, but is rarely life-threatening. Existing cases respond well to treatment with early detection. Dr. Vivian Bucay, a dermatologist based out of San Antonio, specializes in helping to diagnosis patients with squamous cell carcinoma.
What is Squamous Cell Carcinoma?
Squamous cell carcinoma is a specific form of skin cancer that mainly forms within the squamous cells. The squamous cells are responsible for making up the outer layer of your skin.
Squamous cell carcinoma most commonly occurs in skin cells that have been damaged. Damage to skin cells can be a result of an injury or from prolong exposure to sunlight. Even though damaged skin cells are most at risk for this form of skin cancer, undamaged skin cells can still develop squamous cell carcinoma.
This type of skin cancer is known for spreading extremely fast to other parts of the body. Early detection is essential not only for improved chances of treating this cancer, but to prevent it from spreading to other parts of the body.
What are the Symptoms of Squamous Cell Carcinoma?
Signs and symptoms of squamous cell carcinoma will vary from individual to individual. The most common symptom of this type of skin cancer is the development of a small, red sore that is slow to heal. The sore may appear as a flat lesion or a rough, scaly bump. It mostly appears on areas that have come into direct contact with sunlight, such as the ears, neck, or face.
During a skin examination, Dr. Bucay can better analysis and assess any skin lesions or bumps to determine if it may be an early indicator of squamous cell carcinoma. Any skin lesions or bumps that are suspected of this skin cancer will be biopsied to help you receive a definite diagnosis of squamous cell carcinoma.
What Treatments Options are Available for Squamous Cell Carcinoma?
Several treatment options have been proven successful in curing squamous cell carcinoma. Treatments options will vary depending upon the patient and severity of the skin cancer. Some available treatment options include excision, scraping away the cancer cells, cryosurgery, or Mohs surgery.
Dr. Bucay can help you create a personalized treatment plan that works for you. After the cancer is treated, she can help you prevent squamous cell carcinoma from returning by providing recommendations for preventative measures.