Skin Cancer in Birmingham, MI
At Clarkston Dermatology, we know you want a personalized experience with results, especially when facing a skin cancer diagnosis. To do that, you need a team that partners with you to safeguard your health. The problem is that you are often treated like just a number in the medical industry, which can make you feel insignificant. As patients ourselves, we know it can be hard to find a doctor who really listens. That’s why we’ve focused on building relationships with our patients in Birmingham, Troy, and the neighboring Michigan communities for more than 14 years.
What Is Skin Cancer?
Skin cancer is by far the most commonly diagnosed form of cancer, often caused by overexposure to the sun. There are three main skin cancer diagnoses, basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and malignant melanoma.
- Basal Cell Carcinoma is usually found as a red, pearly bump, occasionally ulcerated, on the shoulders, head or neck. While BCC can occur elsewhere on the body, frequent exposure to sun makes these the most common. The tumor may occasionally crust or bleed, and can be mistaken for a sore that refuses to heal. While unpleasant, BCC is the most frequently occurring skin cancer, and if caught early can be completely removed, often without any scarring.
- Squamous Cell Carcinoma is usually expressed as a scaly, crusty, reddened patch of skin, again caused by overexposure to sun and most common on body parts that are frequently exposed. Skin may thicken, ulcerate, bleed, or develop into hard nodules. SCC is the second most common form of skin cancer, and while it can be dangerous, it is still treatable.
- Malignant Melanomas are both the least common and most dangerous form of skin cancer, presenting as a black or brown asymmetrical lesion on the skin, though some aggressive melanoma can appear pink or red. Warning signs for melanoma are change in size, shape, or elevation of an existing mole; a mole larger than a pencil eraser in diameter ought to be examined.
Skin cancers can range from merely unpleasant to outright dangerous, even though it is the least commonly fatal of cancers. If you believe you display symptoms of any of the above skin cancers, please make an appointment immediately so that Clarkston Dermatology can help determine your next step in treatment.
How Much Does Skin Cancer Treatment Cost in Birmingham, MI?
The cost to treat skin cancer at Clarkston Dermatology depends on many factors, including your health insurance coverage, the type of skin cancer, and the location, size, and stage of the tumor. We encourage you to contact us to set up an appointment to learn more and find out your individual cost for treatment.
How Is Skin Cancer Diagnosed?
Skin cancer is typically detected during a full body exam or when you visit a dermatology for a skin biopsy of a suspicious spot. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, about 40 percent of cases of melanoma are found by patients. When a mole or spot looks potentially cancerous, your dermatologist will perform a biopsy to remove a sample of tissue which is checked under a microscope for abnormal cells that indicate the tissue is cancerous. Additional tests may be necessary to determine if the cancer has spread.
What Skin Cancer Treatments Do You Offer?
Fortunately, skin cancer has a very high cure rate when detected and treated early. Most cases of squamous cell carcinoma and basal cell carcinoma can be cured with removal of the cancerous growth, and many cases of melanoma can also be cured with early surgery.
The most appropriate skin cancer treatment will depend on the type of skin cancer, location, and stage. At Clarkston Dermatology, we offer state-of-the-art skin cancer treatments with proven effective results:
- Mohs surgery
- Considered the gold standard in treating squamous cell carcinoma and basal cell carcinoma, this technique preserves as much healthy skin as possible with a high cure rate.
- Photodynamic therapy
- This treatment uses photosensitizing drugs which activate when exposed to laser therapy to kill cancer cells.
- Superficial radiotherapy
- This treatment for non-melanoma skin cancer is non-invasive and uses precise delivery of X-ray radiation just below the skin to destroy malignant cells.
At Clarkston Dermatology, you aren’t just a number. We offer a personalized experience so you can be seen AND heard as you seek treatment for skin cancer. We encourage patients in Birmingham and Troy, MI, to get started by contacting us for an appointment, meeting with our expert team, and beginning a custom skin cancer treatment plan. Before we see you, please download “5 Reasons to Use Sunscreen” to learn more about protecting your skin and reducing the risk of skin cancer recurrence.