What is basal cell carcinoma?

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The team of Harris Dermatology understands the importance of healthy skin. They also know how critical it is for patients to have routine skin cancer screenings. Skin cancer is one of the most highly diagnosed cancers among adult men and women due to a misunderstanding of skin protection. The UV rays from the sun and tanning beds can damage skin cells and cause cancer. Luckily, with routine screenings, many cases of skin cancer can be caught early and treated quickly before it spreads or becomes more problematic. There are many types of skin cancer, and one of them is basal cell carcinoma.

Understanding BCC, or basal cell carcinoma

BCC is one of the most common form of skin cancers, and it is believed to impact approximately one million Americans each year. In fact, 20% of all Americans will develop a type of skin cancer at any point during their lifespan. Basal cell carcinoma is a type of skin cancer that resides deep in the epidermal layer of the skin where sweat ducts and hair follicles reside. This type of skin cancer will grow with UV radiation and exposure on unprotected skin. While one of the most common, it is also a slow-growing skin cancer that rarely spreads elsewhere on the body. With early diagnosis, many patients can have these areas of cancer safely removed to become cancer-free.

What does BCC look like?

When patients are having a skin cancer screening performed by the team at Harris Dermatology, the doctors will be looking for the signs of basal cell carcinoma. It can be presented as:

  • A bump of pink or white with visible blood vessels
  • A bump that looks like a mole but has a pearly outline along the edge
  • A wound that does not heal and consistently bleeds beneath the scab
  • A scaly, flat scarring on the skin with a waxy appearance

If any of these concerns are found on the skin, the doctor may remove a sample of tissue during a biopsy to evaluate it for cancerous cells.

Call Harris Dermatology today for your skin cancer screening

Screening regularly for skin cancer and visiting the dermatologist when issues arise are the two best ways to catch problems early enough for successful intervention. We welcome patients in the communities of Naples and For Myers, FL to connect with our dermatologists at Harris Dermatology to request a visit. Drs. Brian, H. Ross, and Keith Harris are all available to assist men and women in being proactive about their skin’s health and overall wellness.

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We are now accepting in-office appointments!

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We will continue to offer Teledermatology appointments but are now opening our doors for in-person visits as well. While we reopen our offices, the health and safety of our patients and our staff remain our #1 priority.

We are using strict CDC and published OSHA guidelines to routinely sanitize our stations and exam rooms. All equipment and patient contact surfaces are also sanitized after each use and again at the end of the day. We are observing new protocols that we ask you to adhere to for your own health, as well as the vulnerable among us.

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