Skin cancer treatment is provided to the patient with the intention of removing and destroying the cancer with as small a scar as possible. It is depending on the location and size of cancer, patient’s age, health and medical history, and the risk of scarring that the best form of skin cancer treatment is decided on for the patient.
Skin cancer treatment is usually a form of surgery, radiation therapy or chemotherapy. Sometimes the doctor may even suggest a combination of these methods for eradication from skin cancer.
• With surgery, skin cancer is easily and quickly cut from the skin, after which no treatment will be required.
• Some doctors may use curettage as treatment where cancer is scooped out using a curette which is a sharp instrument, with a spoon shaped end. Once this is done, the area is treated with electrodessication where an electric current is used for controlling bleeding and to kill remaining cancer cells around the wound edges.
• Mohs surgery is a special skin cancer treatment that aims at removing all of the cancerous tissue and minimal of healthy tissue. This is the best option when the doctor is apprehensive on the shape and depth of the tumor. It is also used for removing large tumors in hard-to-treat places and for treating recurring cancers. However, it is only doctors trained with this type of surgery who can conduct this surgery.
• Precancerous skin conditions and small skin cancers are best treated with cryosurgery. Here liquid nitrogen is applied to the growth to freeze and kill abnormal cells where dead tissues fall off once the area thaws. This skin treatment does not hurt, but there may be pain and swelling once the area thaws out.
• Laser therapy is used for treating cancer involving the outer layer of skin where a narrow beam of light removes or destroys cancer cells.
• If a large tumor is removed, it may be required to do some grafting to close the wound, and thus reduce the amount of scarring. In this skin cancer treatment, a piece of healthy skin from another part of the body is used for replacing skin that was removed.
• The best treatment is radiation where high energy rays are used for damaging cancer cells and to stop them from growing. This treatment is used for treating areas that are difficult to treat with surgery like nose tip and the ear.
• With topical chemotherapy, anticancer drugs as cream or lotion is applied to the skin and is best for cancers limited to the epidermis.
Though there is effective skin cancer treatment, it can recur somewhere else on the skin. This is why follow up treatment with regular self examinations, regular doctor checkups and following of doctor’s instructions are important to reduce the risk of skin cancer recurring again.