Are you curious about that lesion on your skin? This extra thickening of keratin – a protein inherent in the skin – is commonly known as keratosis. In general, treatment is undertaken for the following reasons: to prevent its development into cancer or other malignant tumors; or in cases of benign keratosis, to eliminate discomfort or plainly to remove the presence of these unsightly skin blemishes. Since you can select from a list of keratosis treatment options, it is to ascertain which of them is most appropriate for you – by checking the keratosis type you have and discovering its cause. This will be a bit hard because there are three types of keratosis. These are the actinic keratosis, seborrheic keratosis and keratosis pilaris which we will be disussing along with their respective treatments.
The first on the list is actinic keratosis which is alternately referred to as “solar keratosis” and “senile keratosis”. The development of bumps that are consolidated, coarse and diverse in color but usually reddish to brownish on sun-exposed body parts is its symptom. The causes are believed to be unprotected overexposure to the sun exacerbated by increasing age. Though you seldom experience pain or itch, this type is dreaded for its precancerous state. Since this type eventually leads to skin cancer, it is a must to receive appropriate treatment. The treatment for actinic keratosis is, in general, its removal through the utilization of various agents such as medications, cryogens like liquid nitrogen, laser, light or electric current or through surgery.
On the other hand, seborrheic keratosis is characterized by the presence of lesions somehow similar to actinic keratosis which manifest anywhere on the body but on the anterior and posterior chest most of the time. But the primary difference is the seborrheic keratosis’ distinctive waxy or oily property. Moreover, unlike actinic keratosis, this type does not progress to cancer. It is safe to say that your enemies are merely unsightliness and the effects of coming in contact with clothing such as itching, bleeding or skin inflammation. Genetics and prolonged sun exposure are the causes of seborrheic keratosis . It actually does not need treatment for it is benign. But if appearance is your concern, you can choose among the following treatment modes. As with actinic keratosis, the affected individual can choose among laser treatments, electrocautery, surgery, curettage or cryosurgery.
Lastly, keratosis pilaris, commonly known as follicular keratosis, like seborrheic keratosis, has a genetic origin. This is also characterized by rough bumps on the skin, usually red and that are usually located at the back and outer arm. Its cause is the overgrowth of keratin resulting to hair follicle enclosure and the eventual formation of tiny, almost rock-like bumps. It is also benign, like seborrheic keratosis, so treatments are only for the manifestations. These treatments are the use of light, the use of laser or the use of prescribed medications usually in the form of topical creams.
In sum, each type of keratosis has a number of appropriate treatments. But if you hate to have skin cancer, to feel any discomfort due to skin itching, swelling and unsightliness, you have to ensure the safety and health of your skin. And this basically means: eating healthy, drinking plenty of water, exercising regularly and having enough sleep.