Patients in Thousand Oaks learn about skin cancer signs and treatment
Nearly four million people in the United States are diagnosed with skin cancer each year. This is why you should conduct personal examinations of your entire body at least monthly. So what should you look for? Let’s look at the most common types of this condition.
Basal cell carcinoma: Signs include pearly translucent bumps, red and scaly patches, or areas of scar tissues that have thickened. They may crust over or bleed. These signs often show up on the face, head, neck, upper back, arms, and hands.
Squamous cell carcinoma: This is often found on the face, ears, lips, scalp, lower legs, and hands. Its early stages reveal signs including scaly, red, and flat patches or scaly bumps. They are rarely painful.
Melanoma: This is the most dangerous type of skin cancer and develops anywhere on the body. For men, it’s commonly found on the back, abdomen, and chest. Women find it on their lower legs. An existing mole that changes color and size, or crusts, oozes, and bleeds is another warning sign. A dark spot appearing next to an existing mole or itchy, painful, and tender moles are also signs to watch for.
During your exams, if you notice anything out of the ordinary — call the dermatologist.
At Daphne I. Panagotacos, M.D., in Westlake Village, CA, you will find two dermatologists certified by the American Board of Dermatology, a board-certified physician assistant, clinical laser specialist, aesthetician, and nurse practitioner. This team serves patients in areas including Westlake Village, Thousand Oaks, and Agoura. Dr. Daphne I. Panagotacos is also a Fellow of the American College of Mohs Surgery. As a Fellow, she’s specialized in treating these types of chronic illnesses using the Mohs micrographic surgical technique.
If you are diagnosed with this chronic illness, Mohs surgery leads as the most advanced and effective treatment. It’s commonly performed to treat squamous cell carcinomas and basal cell carcinomas, as well as melanomas.
With this technique, Dr. Panagotacos identifies and removes the cancerous cells while keeping surrounding healthy tissue intact. During the procedure, she removes the cancer one layer at a time, during stages. It usually takes one to three stages to remove the cells completely. This is an outpatient procedure requiring a local anesthetic to numb the area. We perform the surgery at our office, which can be of comfort to our patients.
If you notice any of the aforementioned warning signs, don’t hesitate to call us. We can be reached at 805-379-3376