Melanoma is the most aggressive type of skin cancer and needs to be diagnosed and treated quickly to provide the best outcome. Our dermatologists and providers at Paducah Dermatology in Paducah, KY, Benton, KY & Martin, TN can help.
The Facts about Melanoma
Melanoma develops in the melanocytes, which are specific cells responsible for skin color. It can have devastating consequences and it can be fatal.
Risk Factors for Melanoma
There are several factors which can increase your risk of developing melanoma, including:
- Having fair skin and freckles
- Having light hair and eyes
- Having a tendency to sunburn easily
- Having a family history of melanoma
- Excessive sun exposure without sunscreen
Why It’s Important to Visit Our Dermatologist Regularly
Regular skin checks with your dermatologist are an important way to protect yourself against melanoma and other forms of skin cancer. Your dermatologist can check your skin for any abnormalities including large, irregular moles and dry, scaly patches of skin. If an area is found, your dermatologist can take a small tissue sample, also known as a biopsy of the tissue to determine if cancer is present.
Treatment of Melanoma
Melanoma is an aggressive skin cancer, so treatment is also aggressive. Common treatments for melanoma include:
- Surgical excision of the cancerous tissue
- Radiation treatment to kill the cancerous cells
- Chemotherapy to kill the cancerous cells
- Mohs micrographic surgery to remove the cancer layer-by-layer
- Medicated lotions or creams to help your body fight the skin cancer
Prevention of Melanoma
Melanoma is serious, but more importantly, you can take steps to help prevent it. Remember to:
- Wear a sunscreen with at least an SPF of 15 daily
- Wear a sunscreen with at least an SPF of 30 if you are outside for an extended period
- Wear a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 50 if you have fair skin and burn easily
- Wear protective clothing including a hat and sunglasses
- Avoid being in the sun between 10AM and 4PM, when ultraviolet rays can cause the most damage
Want to Know More?
To learn more about prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of melanoma and other forms of skin cancer, call our providers at Paducah Dermatology in Paducah, KY, Benton, KY & Martin, TN. You can reach them in the office by calling (270) 444-8477.