Christos Doctors Inn Walk In Healthcare
Dermatologist & Family Medicine Physician located in Lauderdale Lakes, FL
When you’ve been diagnosed with skin cancer, you want a dermatologist you can trust to remove the cancerous cells while also limiting scarring and trauma to the surrounding healthy tissue. In addition to offering skin cancer screenings and diagnoses, Dr. Christopher Smith provides expert skin cancer surgeries, including Mohs surgery, at Christos Doctors Inn Walk In Health Care in Lauderdale Lakes, Florida. If you have a suspicious mole or are looking for an expert to remove your skin cancer, call or schedule a consultation online today.
Skin Cancer Q & A
What is skin cancer?
Skin cancer is a condition where abnormal skin cells grow uncontrollably. Skin cancer begins with DNA damage and is most often triggered by exposure to the UV rays in sunlight and tanning beds. Factors like your family medical history and genetics contribute to your risk of developing skin cancer.
There are three common forms of skin cancer:
- Melanoma is the most dangerous form of skin cancer but when caught early it’s almost always treatable.
- Basal cell carcinoma is the most common form of skin cancer and is also easily treated.
- Squamous cell carcinoma is also common and easily treated, although this form of cancer is likely to metastasize or spread to your lymph nodes if left untreated.
What happens during skin cancer surgery?
Dr. Smith uses a variety of techniques to surgically remove skin cancer, depending on the type, size, and location of the growth. For example, actinic keratosis and small growths are often removed with liquid nitrogen, chemicals, levulonic acid, or phototherapy.
For larger skin cancer growths, Dr. Smith may use an excision technique to remove the growth and a border of the surrounding healthy tissue to ensure all the cancerous cells are removed or he may perform Mohs surgery.
Mohs surgery is a specialized technique where Dr. Smith uses a microscope to not only remove small cancerous growths but also limit the removal of healthy skin and tissue. Dr. Smith removes thin layers of the cancer-bearing skin, examining each sliver of skin under a microscope. When the small pieces of skin no longer show cancerous growths, he knows to stop removing tissue. This reduces the size of your incision and minimizes the potential for scarring.
What are signs of skin cancer?
Skin cancer typically develops as an abnormal growth or mole. Abnormalities are identified using the ABCDE acronym.
- Asymmetry -- differently shaped or sized halves
- Border -- irregular border
- Color -- variation in color of a mole
- Diameter -- larger than 6 millimeters
- Evolving -- changes in size, shape, and color
Actinic keratosis is a precancerous growth that looks like a small crusty or scaly patch of red skin. It may be itchy or inflamed.
If you notice that you’re developing new moles or if your moles are changing, call or schedule an appointment online with Dr. Smith today for expert diagnosis and treatment.