Did you know one in five US adults gets skin cancer during their lifetime? And sadly, two American adults die from skin cancer every hour.
There’s good news, however. Thanks to an increase in early detection and today’s medical advances in dermatology, more than 99% of people diagnosed with skin cancer survive.
At Dermatology Associates of Central NJ, with offices in Old Bridge, Freehold, and Union, New Jersey, our board-certified dermatologists offer the most advanced therapies for treating different types of skin cancer.
Our team also knows the best treatment is early detection through a simple skin cancer screening. Here’s a look at why this screening is so important and the reasons to schedule yours.
The importance of regular screenings
Over one million Americans are diagnosed with nonmelanoma skin cancers, like basal cell and squamous cell cancers, every year. And hundreds of thousands more get diagnosed with life-threatening melanoma, which grows and spreads more quickly, raising the chances of death.
No matter which type of skin cancer gets diagnosed, early treatment is key to a good prognosis. You can stay on top of skin cancer by looking for new freckles and moles or changes in your skin, including:
- A flat, tan, or brown lesion that looks like a scar
- A bump with a waxy or pearly appearance
- A large, brownish spot with darker flecks
- A mole that bleeds or changes in color, size, or texture
- A flat, scaly lesion
- Dark, painful lesions
- A hard, red bump
But these skin growths aren’t always skin cancer and could be a normal part of your skin’s development. Because different types of skin cancer have their own signs and symptoms, it’s important to see a skin expert for an evaluation.
Regular skin exams with an experienced dermatologist, like the team at Dermatology Associates of Central NJ, are the best way to detect skin cancer in the earliest stages.
Skin cancer doesn’t discriminate
Everyone — no matter skin color or tone — can get skin cancer, so everyone should get skin cancer screenings.
Unfortunately, people of color often aren’t diagnosed until the later stages of skin cancer, when it’s more difficult to treat. An annual skin cancer screening helps you stay on top of skin changes and promotes early detection.
Some people have risk factors that make it more likely for them to develop skin cancer. If you have an elevated risk of this disease, you might need skin cancer screenings more frequently than once a year.
Some of the risk factors that increase the likelihood of skin cancer include:
- Blonde or red hair
- Blue or green eyes
- Skin that freckles or sunburns easily
- Family history of melanoma
- History of using tanning beds/machines
- History of an organ transplant
- History of sunburns, especially with blisters
- More than 50 moles
- A job or hobby that means you spend more time in the sun
Your Dermatology Associates of Central NJ provider evaluates your skin and talks to you about your risk factors. Based on this information, we create a personalized skin cancer screening schedule for you.
Skin cancer treatments
If we find a suspicious-looking skin growth or area of skin, we take measures to ensure the best possible outcome for your continued health and wellness.
At Dermatology Associates of Central NJ, we use minimally invasive methods whenever possible to treat precancerous, cancerous, and other suspicious skin growths, including:
- Excisional surgery to cut out skin cancer
- Cryosurgery to freeze skin cancer growth
- Topical chemotherapy
- Laser therapy to treat cancer without harming surrounding tissues
Our team also specializes in Mohs surgery, a special type of skin cancer surgery that removes the cancerous tissues precisely, layer by layer, protecting the surrounding skin.
Your provider examines each sample removed in our on-site laboratory. They then continue to remove layers until no cancer remains.
You finish your Mohs surgery treatment cancer-free with less scarring than other types of surgery. What’s more? This type of treatment has very high cure rates, with a 99% cure rate for new skin cancers and 94% for recurring skin cancers.
Learn more about skin cancer screenings by scheduling an appointment online or over the phone at the Dermatology Associates of Central NJ office nearest you.