Skin Cancer Screening Exams

A skin cancer screening is a common visual exam of the skin that a healthcare provider performs. Generally, the screening examines the skin for moles, birthmarks, or other marks that are uncommon in color, size, shape, or texture. Moreover, a few particular rare marks may be signs of skin cancer. That’s why skin cancer screening exams are suggested only for adults at higher risk as they have an increased chance of getting the diseases.

Even though being at a higher risk doesn’t ultimately means you can surely get skin cancer. However, it’s better to get regular screening to diagnose skin cancer if you have it. As a result, your trusted doctor can diagnose it at its earliest stage and immediately start with a suitable treatment. Apart from regular screening exams, you must also be aware of your skin. It means you should notice the sudden or irregular signs or changes on your skin. Once you do, instantly tell them to your doctor without delay.

Quickly show your doctor any of the following signs:

  • Suspicious skin area
  • A sore spot that doesn’t heal fully
  • Any sudden change in a mole or freckle

So, ensure to get a full-body skin cancer screening exam each year once you recognize any of the following signs:

Inherited risks

  • Red hair and freckles albinism
  • More than 50 moles
  • Family history or record of melanoma
  • Genetic syndromes that make you highly sensitive to the sun

Environmental exposures

  • Extreme sun exposure
  • Often trips to the tanning salon
  • One or more blistering sunburn(s)

Personal precancerous conditions

  • Actinic keratosis
  • Dysplastic nevi (unusual moles)
  • Personal skin cancer history
  • Basal and squamous cell cancer

Prior treatment

  • Radiation treatment
  • Immunosuppressive treatment
  • Any other cancer treatments that increase risk