There are a few things that happen before diagnosing and treating skin cancer. First, you have to know there is something wrong. If you’re ever uncertain of a mole, dark spot, or blemish on any part of your body, never hesitate to schedule an appointment with a dermatologist to inspect or take a biopsy of the blemish.
Diagnosing Skin Cancer of the Scalp
At your appointment, the doctor will examine the scalp for any abnormal growths, changes in moles, or other suspicious lesions. If any suspicious areas are found, a biopsy may be performed. During a biopsy, a small sample of the skin is taken and examined under a microscope to determine if cancer cells are present. In some cases, imaging tests like CT scans, MRI, or ultrasound may be used to assess the extent of the cancer and if it has spread to nearby lymph nodes or other areas of the body.
Treating Skin Cancer of the Scalp
The choice of treatment for skin cancer on the scalp depends on several factors, including the type and stage of cancer, the size, and your overall health. Some common treatments are:
Surgery is often the primary treatment for most skin cancers. It involves removing the cancerous tissue and a margin of healthy skin to ensure all cancer cells are taken out. For smaller lesions, Mohs surgery might be considered, which has a recovery rate for certain types of skin cancer.
Radiation therapy uses high-energy beams to target and kill cancer cells. It may be used as the primary treatment or in combination with surgery, especially if there is a risk of cancer cells remaining after surgery.
While not as commonly used for skin cancer, systemic chemotherapy might be prescribed in cases where the cancer has spread to other parts of the body.
Immunotherapy drugs help the immune system recognize and attack cancer cells. Some immunotherapies have shown promise in treating advanced cases of certain types of skin cancer.
Book an Appointment
There are many treatment options available for skin cancer. The types of treatments vary depending on the severity of the skin cancer. If you’re unsure about a blemish on your scalp or anywhere else on your body, make sure to call Harris Dermatology at (239) 936-3344 for their Fort Myers location or (239) 596-1848 for their Naples location to schedule an appointment.