Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer in the United States. It is extremely common around the rest of the world as well. There are three main types: basal cell carcinoma (BCC), squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) and melanoma. The last is the deadliest, and it is, fortunately, also the least common. While the other two varieties are less likely to kill the patient, they can cause severe disfigurement. Over one million people in the United States are diagnosed with basal cell carcinoma or squamous cell carcinoma each year.
Most patients with skin cancer undergo some type of surgical procedure to remove the cancer. While surgery, especially Mohs surgery, can be effective, it is not always an option. The patient may be elderly or have health problems that make them a poor surgical candidate, or the cancer might be located on a place, like the face, where the surgery could leave a disfiguring scar. Surgery is also not always necessary. Fortunately, there are alternatives to surgery. In the right situation, non-surgical skin cancer treatments can be just as effective.
Non-surgical skin cancer treatments may involve the use of light therapy, cryotherapy, medications or various other techniques. Often times, a combination approach is best. The truth of the matter is that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to treating skin cancer non-surgically. It all depends on the unique situation. The right treatment varies depending on a whole host of factors.
It is important to note that non-surgical skin cancer treatments are typically the first form of treatment. It is usually not until non-surgical treatments don’t work that surgery is then considered. However, this also depends on the situation.
Some of the benefits of non-surgical skin cancer treatments include the lack of downtime and convenience. Often times, the patient doesn’t need anesthesia or a lengthy recovery time. With that being said, these treatments are typically not recommended if the patient has a cancer that has penetrated to the deeper layers of the skin and/or has spread.
We invite you to schedule a consultation at Dr. Yeoman’s Dermatology Office to learn more about the non-surgical skin cancer treatments that are available to you. For your convenience, we have locations in Poplar Bluff and Paragould. During an appointment at one of our offices, our team of professionals can assess your skin cancer and determine if non-surgical treatments are likely to provide a cancer-free outcome. Contact us today to set up an appointment!