Skin Cancer

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Cancer of the skin is at present the most common all form of cancers found in humans, and the most common of the skin cancers are Basal Cell Carcinoma, Squamous Cell Carcinoma and Melanoma (Hill et al, 2004).Ultraviolet radiation is the predominant risk factor for the development of both melanoma and nonmelanoma skin cancers (Gesensway, 2000).

Continued exposure to uv radiation can damage the DNA of skin cells to such an extent that repair is no longer possible, and permanent genetic mutations replace normal cell replication.

There are three different types of skin cancer, each named after the type of cell from which they originate: basal cells, squamous cells and melanocytes.

These skin cancers are called
– Basal Cell Carcinoma,
РSquamous Cell Carcinoma,  and
РMelanoma  respectively.

Basal Cell Carcinoma and Squamous Cell Carcinoma can cause severe illness, and if not detected and treated early will permanently damage and disfigure the skin. When the skin cancer of these types is treated in the early stages there is a 95% chance of cure.

Out of these three types of skin cancer the most serious is Melanoma, which comes from the melanocyte cells.

Australia has the highest percentage of skin cancer victims in the world. It is now known that 1-in-2 Australians will develop skin cancer during their lifetime.

In America the rate of melanoma cancer is increasing by 7% per year, with 1-in-5 Americans developing skin cancer during their lifetime. Melanoma is the most common form of skin cancer for 25 to 29 year olds. Malignant Melanoma is the cause of over 75% of deaths from skin cancer.

Overexposure to the sun is the largest contributor to skin and lip cancer. This means that it is also largely avoidable if proper sun protection is used on a regular basis.

Artificial UV rays are just as dangerous as natural UV rays, and it is just as easy to get skin cancer from sun beds and tanning lamps as from the sun.

Skin Cancer:
– Basal Cell Carcinoma
– Squamous Cell Carcinoma
– Melanoma