Types of Skin Cancer

The most common type of skin cancer is basal cell carcinoma. Fortunately, this is also the least dangerous kind as it tends to grow slowly, and rarely spreads beyond its original site. Though basal cell carcinoma is seldom life-threatening, if left untreated it can grow deep beneath the skin and into the underlying tissue and bone, causing serious damage (particularly if it’s located near the eye).

The next most common kind of skin cancer is squamous cell carcinoma, frequently appearing on the lips, face, or ears. It sometimes spreads to distant sites, including lymph nodes and internal organs. If not treated, squamous cell carcinoma can become life threatening.

A third form of skin cancer, and the least common, is malignant melanoma. Its incidence is rapidly increasing , particularly in the Sunbelt states. Malignant melanoma is the most dangerous type of skin cancer. If discovered early enough, it can be completely cured. However, if it’s not treated quickly, malignant melanoma may spread throughout the body and is often deadly.

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