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Skin Cancer Specialist

Seacoast Dermatology

Dermatology Clinic and Mohs Surgery located in Exeter, Portsmouth, and Dover NH

Untreated skin cancer can spread and become life-threatening. Early detection of abnormal skin growths through routine screenings and skin checks is essential. At Seacoast Dermatology, which has locations in Exeter, Portsmouth, and Dover, New Hampshire, you can expect comprehensive skin cancer screenings and treatments. If you have a history of skin cancer or notice an abnormal growth, book an exam right away. Request an appointment online, or call your most convenient location directly.

Skin Cancer Q & A

What are the symptoms of skin cancer?

Skin cancer occurs when skin cells start developing rapidly out of control. Several types of skin cancer exist, and each one has its own unique symptoms, as described below.

Basal cell carcinoma

Basal cell carcinoma, which is the most common form of skin cancer, resides in the deepest layer of your skin, near hair follicles and sweat ducts. Common signs and symptoms of basal cell carcinoma include:

  • Pearly white bumps
  • Sores that heal and re-open
  • Flat scaly scars with a waxy appearance

Squamous cell carcinoma

Squamous cell carcinoma cells develop in the upper layer of your skin and tend to resemble fish scales under a microscope. When you have squamous cell carcinoma, you may notice that you have crusty or scaly patches of skin that have a red or inflamed base. In many cases, squamous cell carcinoma stems from actinic keratoses (precancer).  

Malignant melanoma

The most deadly form of skin cancer, malignant melanoma cells are found in the bottom layer of your skin in cells that produce melanin (melanocytes). Melanomas tend to grow inside of existing moles and can have:

  • Irregular or scalloped borders
  • Varying shades of color
  • Asymmetrical shapes

Because any form of skin cancer has the potential to spread to other areas, if any of these symptoms sound familiar, it’s important to have a skin check right away.

How did I get skin cancer?

In many cases, skin cancer is hereditary. If someone in your bloodline has skin cancer, especially a parent or sibling, your risk is higher. But genes aren’t the only thing to blame when it comes to skin cancer. You can also develop skin cancer due to:

  • Having many moles
  • Weakened immune system
  • Childhood history of sunburns
  • Ultraviolet (UV) light exposure (sun or tanning beds)
  • Having fair skin, since you have less protective melanin pigment

Sometimes, skin cancer is also linked to exposure to certain chemical substances, like arsenic. Plus, if you’ve had skin cancer in the past, your risk of developing it again is much greater.

In any case, the leading dermatologists at Seacoast Dermatology, have extensive experience in diagnosing and treating skin cancer. The dermatology team offers some of the most advanced skin cancer treatments available in New Hampshire.

Which skin cancer treatment do I need?

Your skin cancer treatment plan from Seacoast Dermatology, is based upon your specific diagnosis. If you have basal cell carcinoma or squamous cell carcinoma, your treatment may include:

  • Surgical excision
  • Radiation therapy
  • Mohs micrographic surgery
  • Prescription medicated creams
  • Liquid nitrogen freezing (cryosurgery)
  • Curettage and desiccation to scrape away and kill cancer cells

With malignant melanoma, after removing the cancerous growth, your dermatologist may recommend radiation or chemotherapy. If the cancer has spread to other areas, like your lymph nodes, you might need surgery. But the compassionate team at Seacoast Dermatology, cares for you throughout every step of your skin cancer treatment, so you can expect comprehensive care.

If you have a history of skin cancer or a suspicious growth, book an exam at Seacoast Dermatology, right away. You can schedule online or over the phone.

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