Squamous cell carcinoma can emerge from a premalignant condition such as actinic keratosis (AK). Squamous cell carcinoma is one of the most infamous skin cancers known. Having AK can heighten one’s risk of having squamous cell carcinoma, so if you are concerned about your health, get yourself diagnosed.
AK is caused by the irregular maturation of keratinocytes. The epidermis thickens, that’s why it appears to be bumpy and scaly. As the name suggest, it has something to do with keratin, the component of our hair and nails. This also contributes to actinic keratosis’ wart like appearance.
Actinic keratosis can progress to squamous cell carcinoma if it is taken for granted. Since the squamous cells are flat, thin cells, they can be easily damaged by UV radiation from the sun. Skin cancer can be thwarted if one is cautious about queer changes on the skin.
You can select from many types of treatments. It also depends on your budget and the severity of your condition.
Actinic Keratosis Removal Treatments
• Laser surgery can be expensive, but it’s worth every dollar when it comes to its effectiveness. Specifically, CO2 and Er-YAG lasers are used for actinic keratosis.
• Electrocautery is a form of cautery that uses electricity to burn off areas infested with actinic keratosis.
• The same as electrocautery, but this time, low temperature is used to solidify off cells affected by actinic keratosis. Liquid nitrogen is used for this procedure.
• Actinic keratosis can be effectively eradicated using 5-fluorouracil. This sort of cream works by blocking the further reproduction of abnormal cells. There is nothing to worry about its effect to healthy cells since abnormal cells are the real target of this cream. The treatment using this cream could be very harsh, but the results are satisfying.
• Imiquimod which goes by trade names Aldara or Beselna, is a cream which is classified as an immune response modifier. Treating yourself with this can cause discomforts, but if you are really determined to get rid of your actinic keratosis, then you should endure the discomforts it can cause.
Actinic keratosis can be removed by those medication effectively, but there are still more treatments available. Your over all health should be considered before going through these treatments. Early intervention of actinic keratosis can prevent you from having bigger problems such as squamous cell carcinoma.