Skin cancers

Melanoma

Today we are often faced with skin cancer, either by the media or our surroundings. The number of melanoma-bearing Belgians is increasing every year. Melanoma is a very aggressive form of cancer that originates in the melanocytes (melanin producing cells of the skin). What does a melanoma look like? More often it is a dark spot, irregular in colour and delimited. The ABCDE criteria is often used for its definition:
 

  • Assymetry
  • Border = irregular edges
  • Colour = uneven colouring
  • Diameter = large diameter
  • Evolving = evolutionary, the spot grows suddenly, causing tingling, pain or bleeding.

 
If you have pigmentation patches, light skin or a member of your family has been diagnosed with skin cancer, consider being checked annually by a dermatologist.
We have a consultation specifically intended for the control of these pigmentation spots. They are then subjected to a double check. The clinical diagnosis is always controlled by dermatoscope, a device which allows us to observe in detail.
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Basal cell carcinoma

Basal cell carcinoma is the most common skin cancer. It occurs mostly in areas frequently exposed to the sun such as the face, and in people of middle age or older.
This type of skin cancer rarely causes metastasis. Repeated exposures to the sun for several years favours the appearance of basal cell carcinoma. People with fair skin, especially those who live near the equator, are more subject than those living in temperate zones.
People with fair skin are more at risk than people of African or Asian origin whose skin is more pigmented. The pigment protects the skin from sunlight, which is why people with lightly pigmented skin are more likely to be diagnosed with skin cancer. This is a person with skin type 1: blonde or red hair, fair skin that does not easily bronze with freckles, presence of freckles all over her body.
95% of people with basal cell carcinoma are cured. The earlier the disease is diagnosed, the easier and more effective the treatment will be. If you see a suspicious spot on your body that might be a tumour, it is important to seek prompt medical attention.
Several treatments are possible. The most effective method is to remove the spot under local anesthesia. The lesions can also be treated by photodynamic therapy after applying a cream.
 


Squamous cell carcinoma

Squamous cell carcinoma is a form of skin cancer. It is a malignant tumour located in the cells of the epidermis. It may be limited to the skin, but may also infiltrate the deeper dermis and extend to other organs, resulting in metastasis.
Squamous cell carcinomas can theoretically appear anywhere on the body, also in the oral mucosa, even though they are found most often on areas of the body exposed to the sun such as the face, neck, bald head, hands, arms, shoulders and back. The pavilions of the ears and the lower lip are also places to watch. Squamous cell carcinomas are the most common form of skin cancer after basal cell carcinomas. The appearance of this tumour is strongly linked to exposure to ultraviolet radiation (sunlight or tanning beds). They sometimes appear as a complication after stubborn ulcers or bone infections. They can also grow on old burn scars.
The surgical removal of the tumour is the most freauently recommended and applied treatment. This is a fairly mild treatment under local anaesthetic. Like other forms of skin cancer, squamous cell carcinoma also destroys peripheral tissues. Untreated it can therefore cause the destruction of many tissues, sometimes even whole parts of the nose, ear, etc. It is therefore crucial to treat this type of tumour as soon as possible.

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