Monday, October 26, 2009


Skin cancer is a malignant growth on the skin which can have many causes. The most common skin cancers are basal cell cancer, squamous cell cancer, and melanoma. Skin cancer generally develops in the epidermis (the outermost layer of skin), so a tumor is usually clearly visible. This makes most skin cancers detectable in the early stages. There are three common and likely types of skin cancer, each of which is named after the type of skin cell from which it arises.

The most common types of skin cancers are:

• Basal Cell Carcinoma
• Squamous Cell Carcinoma
• Melanoma

Unlike many other cancers, including those originating in the lung, pancreas, and stomach, only a small minority of those afflicted will actually die of the disease. Skin cancer represents the most commonly diagnosed cancer, surpassing lung, breast, colorectal and prostate cancer. Melanoma is less common than basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma, but it is the most serious—for example, in the UK there are 9,500 new cases of melanoma each year, and 2,300 deaths. It is the most common cancer in the young population (20 – 39 age group). It is estimated that approximately 85% of cases are caused by too much sun.[citation needed] Non-melanoma skin cancers are the most common skin cancers. The majority of these are called basal cell carcinomas. These are usually localized growths caused by excessive cumulative exposure to the sun and do not tend to spread.

Skin cancer has many potential causes, these include:

1. Studies have shown that smoking tobacco and related products can double the risk of skin cancer.

2. Overexposure to UV-radiation may cause skin cancer either via the direct DNA damage or via the indirect DNA damage mechanism. Overexposure (burning) UVA & UVB have both been implicated in causing DNA damage resulting in cancer. Sun strength between 10AM and 4PM is most intense. Natural (sun) & artificial UV exposure (tanning salons) are possibly associated with skin cancer.[citation needed]


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  © All Cancer Article and Healthy Spain by 2008

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