What are the symptoms of skin cancer?

                What are the symptoms of skin cancer?

What are the symptoms of skin cancer?_ ichhori.com

CANCER; just a six letter word but is capable enough to scare people out, the moment they hear someone is suffering from CANCER and one of the reasons is that the fatality caused due to cancer. The fatality rate is very high because of cancer, and that is one of the most important things that make people scared of it, however with advancement in technology and medical science, things are changing and doctors are able to bring down the fatality rate a lot. 

But why are we talking about cancer today? Well, that’s because we wish to know what the symptoms of Skin Cancer are, so that people can keep a watch on themselves, and the moment they notice any of it, they can get them treated without any further delays and damage to their health. But before get to know the symptoms of Skin Cancer, let’s have a quick look at what is Cancer and Skin Cancer?

What is cancer? 

Cancer is a type of disease in which some of the body’s cells grow crazily and outspreads to other parts of the body. 

Cancer can develop anywhere and everywhere in the human body, which is made up of billions & billions of cells. Usually, human cells grow and multiply (through a process known as cell division) to form new cells as it the necessity of the body. When cells grow old or become damaged, they die, and new cells appear in place of the old ones.

However once in a while this orderly procedure breaks down, and abnormal or damaged cells grow and multiply in a crazy manner when they shouldn’t. And these abnormal or damaged cells may form tumours, (Tumours are nothing but lumps of tissues). Although Tumours can either be cancerous or non - cancerous (also known as benign). 


What are the most common types of cancer?

Over time, there have 200 different types of cancer that have been identified thus one can see that there are so many different types of cancer prevailing in the world and because there are so many different types, there has to be some most common ones as well and they are as follows: Breast Cancer, Colon Cancer, Kidney Cancer, Melanoma, Bladder Cancer and so on. 

The above mentioned are some of the most common types of Cancer that one can suffer from. And as we can see that Melanoma Cancer is also one of the most common types of cancers thus making it important for us to know about Skin Cancer, it’s types and symptoms, so that if one suffers from it they can get themselves treated soon without being much damaged being done.

What is Skin Cancer?

Skin Cancer is nothing but the abnormal growth of the skin cells and most often develops on the skin that is most exposed in the sunlight. But that doesn’t mean that one can be affected by skin cancer on the areas not exposed to the sun. There are three main types of Skin Cancer and they are as follows:

  • Basal cell carcinoma, 

  • Squamous cell carcinoma and 

  • Melanoma

And they have got their names from the different layers of the skin, meaning the layer of the skin where the cancer cells grow or develop.

Where Skin Cancer develops?

Skin cancer develops essentially on areas of the skin that is exposed to the sun, including the scalp, face, lips, ears, neck, chest, arms and hands, and on the legs in women. But it can also form on areas that rarely see the light of day —one’s palms, beneath their fingernails or toenails, and their genital area.

Skin cancer affects people of all skin tones, including those with darker complexions. When melanoma occurs in people with dark skin tones, it's most likely to occur in areas not normally exposed to the sun, such as the palms of the hands and soles of the feet. 


Where do Skin Cancers start?

Most skin cancers start in the top layer of skin, called as the epidermis. There are 3 main types of cells in the epidermis:

  • Squamous cells: Squamous cells are flat cells in the upper (outer) part of the epidermis, which are regularly shed as the new ones form. When these cells grow out of control, they can develop into squamous cell skin cancer (also called squamous cell carcinoma).

  • Basal cells: Basal cells are in the lower part of the epidermis, called the basal cell layer. These cells regularly divide to form new cell and to replace the squamous cells that wear off the skin’s surface. As these cells move up in the epidermis, they get flatter, thus eventually becoming squamous cells. Skin cancers that start in the basal cell layer are called basal cell skin cancers or basal cell carcinomas.

  • Melanocytes: Melanocytes are cells that make the brown pigment called melanin, which gives the skin its tan or brown colour. Melanin acts as the body’s natural sunscreen, protecting the deeper layers of the skin from some of the harmful effects of the sun. Melanoma skin cancer starts in these cells.

Now, that we know what is Cancer and Skin Cancer and how Skin Cancers develop and where do Skin Cancers start from, let’s look at the symptoms of Skin Cancer. We shall look at all the symptoms based on different types of Cancer:

Basal Cell Skin Cancer Symptoms:

  • Pinkish or Red shiny bumps.

  • A flat white or yellowish area on the skin.

  • Red patches.

  • Open sore that doesn’t heal.

Squamous Cell Skin Cancer Symptoms:

  • Rough Scaly Patches.

  • Raised bumps with slight indention at the centres.

  • Open sore that doesn’t heal.

  • Wartlike (a small hard growth on the skin caused by a virus) growths.

Melanoma Skin Cancer Symptoms:

  • Appearance of a large brownish in colour spot along with darker speckles.

  • Moles that change colour, size, or even bleeds.

  • Appearance of a small sized lesion with an irregular border and can appear as red, blue, pink, white and blue-black in some places.

  • Appearance of a lesion which is itchy and sometimes painful.

  • These lesions can also appear in a darker version on one’s soles, palms, fingertips or toes, even on one’s mucous membranes, on the lining of one’s mouth, nose, anus and vagina.

Now let’s take a look at the symptoms of the Skin Cancers which are rare and not that common.

Kaposi Sarcoma Symptoms:

  • Formation of Red or Purple patches on the skin or mucous membranes.

Merkel Cell Carcinoma Symptoms:

  • Appearance of shiny nodules that mostly occur just beneath the skin or on the hair follicles.

  • Merkel Cell Carcinoma can be found on neck, head and trunk.

Sebaceous gland carcinoma Symptoms:

  • Appearance of hard painless nodules.

  • These nodules can appear anywhere but they mostly appear on the eyelids and people often tend to mistake it for eyelid problems.

Thus, now we have come to know different types of Skin Cancer that are prevalent in the world, and what are the symptoms for the same. Although Skin Cancers don’t seem to be the fatal type but if not taken care of immediately then they definitely can be harmful and dangerous for one’s health as well as fatal. So, it’s a request my dear friends the moment you see any of these symptoms on your body or on someone closer to you, then immediately visit a doctor, get yourself checked and if necessary treated as well.

Ref: Skin cancer - Symptoms and causes - Mayo Clinic

What Are Basal and Squamous Cell Skin Cancers? | Types of Skin Cancer



Previous Post Next Post