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Melanoma in New Jersey

Melanoma is the most dangerous type of skin cancer. When caught early, it can be easily treated with excision. If left untreated or not found in its early stage, melanoma can spread to the lymph nodes or other organs and become a serious health issue. Prevention is essential with sun avoidance or protection. Regular skin screenings are important to identify a suspicious skin lesion.

Symptoms of Melanoma

Melanoma can occur anywhere on your body with areas that have been exposed to ultraviolet radiation the most vulnerable. Too much time in the sunlight or tanning beds increases your risk of developing melanoma. It can also develop in hidden areas like between your toes, under your nail, in the mucous membrane that lines the mouth, esophagus or urinary tract.

As the deadliest form of skin cancer, melanoma can be identified through the ABCDE method:

  • A for Asymmetrical or irregularly shaped mole with portions that have a different appearance or texture
  • B for a Border that is rough, irregular or scalloped, not smooth
  • C for Color that is unevenly distributed and may feature dark spots
  • D for Diameter or new growth in a mole that is larger than 1/4 inch or the equivalent of the tip of a pencil eraser
  • E for Evolving growing in size or changes in color or shape, often elevated off the skin

It is important to notice any changes because melanoma can be difficult to detect in its early stages. Be on the lookout for any changes in the skin such as a:

  • New mole or spot 
  • Change in the color, shape, or size of a mole
  • A spot that is not healing
  • Painful or itchy sore 
  • Bleeding spots 
  • Shiny or pale lump 
  • Bleeding lump that appears crusty
  • Rough or scaly red spot 

Causes of Melanoma

Your skin cells evolve by having healthy cells pushing older ones to the surface of your skin to eventually fall off. Melanoma develops when there are changes in the melanocytes, which are the cells that produce melanin, that give color to your skin. Some cells become damaged and progress into cancerous cells. The actual cause of melanoma is unclear but it is believed to be a combination of factors, including environment and genetics. Most prominent among them is exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from sunlight and tanning lamps and beds.

Excessive exposure to UV light is known to increase the risk of skin cancer like melanoma. There are other factors that may increase your risk of melanoma. For example, having fair skin makes you more vulnerable to UV radiation. People with blond or red hair or who have freckles are more susceptible to developing melanoma. Three personal factors can increase the risk of melanoma and skin cancer: a history of getting sunburns, a weak immune system, and having more than 50 moles, especially unusual ones that are larger and may have irregular borders and different colors.

Procedure for Melanoma

Melanoma treatment can help remove the cancerous tissue completely. A melanoma surgery excises the lesion and some of the non-cancerous tissue surrounding it. Sometimes, a skin graft is needed when melanoma covers a large area of your skin.

Additional treatments may be necessary if the melanoma has spread to other areas of your body. For example, a lymph node biopsy may be requested if the cancer is reaching the lymph nodes.

Tips: Sun Exposure

Too much exposure to UV radiation is known to increase the risk of skin cancer. There are a few things you can do to protect yourself against melanoma. First, sunburns are to be avoided. Make sure you apply a minimum sun protection factor of at least 30 with zinc oxide or titanium dioxide and do so at least half an hour before going out in the sunlight. And keep reapplying sunscreen every couple of hours, especially after strenuous activities such as swimming.

It is a good idea to wear clothing that protects your body from the sun. When it comes to children, try to keep them in the shade whenever possible and ensure to apply sunscreen SPF of 50 or higher. Infants should be kept out of direct sunlight. Be aware that the sun is most intense between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. For people who work out in the sun, take every precaution to minimize exposure and spend time in the shade as much as possible.

At Sperling Dermatology: We Know Skin

Sperling Dermatology is the top destination for melanoma in New Jersey. Dr. Shari Sperling will provide a detailed dermatological screening in order to keep your skin safe. Specializing in both medical and cosmetic dermatology, Dr. Sperling will help you achieve Spectacular Skin. At Sperling Dermatology, we care about our patients and work hard to leave you looking and feeling spectacular.

Request your appointment and discover your true beauty. We offer the best skincare in new jersey so call us at 973-541-8138 today.

Conditions We Treat

Here are some of the following conditions that we treat at Sperling Dermatology:

Come visit Dr. Sperling and our team of cosmetic experts and let us help you achieve the spectacular skin you deserve! #StaySpectacular

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