Melanoma Skin Cancer Essay

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There are two main types of skin cancers: melanoma (MSC) and non-melanoma skin cancers (NMSC). NMSC are characterized by a slow superficial evolution in the epidermis. They can be classified in two main types: basal cell carcinoma (BCC), concerning cells at the bottom of the epidermis, and squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) concerning cells at the top of the epidermis. Both forms are highly treatable and survival rates are relatively high. However, because it often occurs in areas easily exposed to the sunlight, i.e. around the neck and the face, it can be disfiguring. Moreover dermatologists usually prefer to remove a large area around the tumor whose borders are difficult to localize without appropriate imaging tools. Still, an efficient treatment…show more content…
Basal cell carcinoma represents 70% of the skin cancer. It expands superficially (depth < 500 µm) and rarely metastasises unlike SCC. Consequently it is usually not life-threatening whereas SCC can lead to death. The ability to diagnose NMSC during its early stages is essential to limit the affected area and then avoid large scares. Melanoma skin cancers (MSC) are characterized by a transformation of the melanocytes, the cells that are responsible for the skin pigment, and can spread to other organs of the human body. Malignant melanoma represents around 70% of melanomas. It is the most serious type of cancer (responsible for 75% of death related to skin cancer) but it is also the less common. MSC is characterized by a prolonged horizontal growth phase during which the tumor grows within the epidermis but does not spread to the underlying dermis. During the second phase, the tumor expands vertically reaching the dermis and eventually can metastasise. Therefore, it is critical to detect MSC before the vertical growth phase. Although a majority of cutaneous melanomas can be recognized with naked eyes, some lesions that were previously regarded as benign might, due

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