Nonmelanoma Skin Cancers Can Be Dangerous, Disfiguring and Deadly
According to The Skin Cancer Foundation, an estimated 3,170 deaths from nonmelanoma skin cancers will occur in the US in 2013
May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month, and while the dangers of melanoma are well known, it is important not to neglect the warning signs of the two most common types of skin cancer: basal cell carcinoma (BCC) and squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), which can also become disfiguring and even deadly if not diagnosed and treated promptly. Because about 90 percent of nonmelanoma skin cancers are associated with exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun, The Skin Cancer Foundation encourages everyone to practice proper sun protection and learn how to spot nonmelanoma skin cancers.
“Melanoma is the most talked about skin cancer because it’s the most deadly; however, basal and squamous cell carcinomas should be taken seriously as well,” says Perry Robins, MD, President of The Skin Cancer Foundation. “Most nonmelanoma skin cancers are preventable, if a complete sun protection regimen is followed. This is why protecting sun-exposed areas, such as the ears, nose and lips, and learning the warning signs of these common skin cancers, is so important.”
Between 40 and 50 percent of Americans who live to age 65 will be diagnosed with either a BCC or an SCC at least once. The Skin Cancer Foundation urges everyone to learn the facts about nonmelanoma skin cancers:
Basal Cell Carcinoma is the most common form of skin cancer, with an estimated 2.8 million diagnosed annually in the US.
Squamous Cell Carcinoma is the second most common form of skin cancer, with an estimated 700,000 cases diagnosed in the US each year, resulting in approximately 2,500 deaths.
To properly protect against the dangers of skin cancer, follow The Skin Cancer Foundation’s Prevention Guidelines: