Actinic Keratoses (AK) are crusted, scaly growths caused by ultraviolet rays from the sun. They often appear on the sun exposed skin areas such as the face, scalp, ears, lips, neck, forearms and backs of the hands. They can resemble pink, red, tan, or brown warty growths. AKs are frequently described as “precancerous” because some of these may transform into a type of skin cancer known as Squamous Cell Carcinoma (SCC) if left untreated.
While there are several methods by which your dermatologist may treat AKs without causing scarring, there are far fewer ways to treat them once transformed into a skin cancer. SCCs, the second most common skin cancer, can invade the skin locally, and sometime metastasize and spread throughout the body. We strongly encourage our patients with AKs to have them treated early to avoid these undesirable outcomes.
If you believe you may have actinic keratosis, schedule an appointment with us to evaluate and discuss which treatment may be best for you.
You can learn more about Actinic Keratoses at these websites: