If you are living in Australia or New Zealand, and you are a white male who is working long hours in the sun, beware. You might develop skin cancer. It may sound a bit too specific, but that is what statistics hint at: People living in Australia are at a high risk of developing skin cancer, and white males are more vulnerable to this wicked disease!
The word cancer conjures up several disturbing images in our minds. Thanks to the incorrect depiction of this disease in the films, we think cancer is incurable. But this is perception. Cancer, and more particularly, skin cancer can be treated, and, in some cases, this disease can be reversed.
There are three types of skin cancer- basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and melanoma. Each of these cancers has unique symptoms. If you suspect that someone around you whom you know may be exhibiting the symptoms, bring the concern out to them and tell them that all hope is not lost! They can be fine again with the use of these six therapies.
- Radiation Therapy
This therapy is very popular among patients and surgeons alike. It is simple, cost-effective, and can treat your skin cancer to a large extent. In this therapy, surgeons send a beam of high energy to your affected body part. The aim is to kill all the cancerous cells. Radiation therapy does not injure healthy skin cells, so there is no significant side-effect.
The high beam of energy can be X-rays, gamma rays, protons, etc. During this therapy, you don’t have to get admitted to a hospital. You may visit the Outpatient Department of your referred hospital and get the therapy. Each session lasts for not more than an hour. The cost of this therapy is insignificant in comparison to the overall cost of the equipment. Some patients have availed of this therapy for as long as ten years at a little cost.
- Mohs Surgery
Another way to treat skin cancer is Mohs surgery. In this procedure, surgeons peel off the cancerous skin cells and examine them under a microscope. This peeling-off continues until all the cells have been sliced off from your skin. Cancerous cells have roots, much like plants and trees.
Moh’s surgery removes all those roots by repeated slicing. You can say that this surgical procedure is highly effective in uprooting cancer. It also stops this disease from spreading to other parts of the body. If you are considering visiting a cancer surgeon, you may call specialists like SunDoctors for a quick consultation.
Your doctor may freeze skin cancer cells with liquid nitrogen. Upon thawing, these dormant cells slough off, and the spread of this disease stopped.
This therapy can work in all forms of skin cancer. Your doctor will cut off the affected skin; he will also cut off a small portion of your healthy skin. In some cases of advanced skin cancer, a wider area of healthy skin is excised ( cut off) by the surgeon.
- Curettage or Cryotherapy
In this procedure, your surgeon first removes the cancerous growth. Then, using a circular blade, he cuts the underlying cancer cells. In the next step, he removes the remaining cancerous cells with an electric needle. In cryotherapy, the remaining cancerous cells are frozen with liquid nitrogen and made inactive.
- Immune Therapy
In this therapy, your surgeon vaccinates you and tries to strengthen your immune systems. Once these systems respond to the vaccine, your body can fight cancer on its own.
- Photo-Dynamic Therapy
Some treatments combine the use of drugs and light. Certain drugs work only with light. This treatment can also help you. All these treatments can work when your cancer is diagnosed early. Some cancers like melanoma are difficult to diagnose and treat. Such cancers may need advanced treatments.