3 Lesser-Known Skin Cancers: Warning Signs

When it comes to skin cancer, early detection can make all of the difference. However, every year people develop lesser-known types of skin cancer which aren't always easy to spot. When a person develops some of the lesser known types of skin cancer, they may believe that they have a different skin condition which is minor and which does not require urgent investigation and treatment. Below is a guide to some of the lesser known types of skin cancer and the warning signs you need to look out for.

1. Kaposi's Sarcoma

Kaposi's sarcoma is a very aggressive form a skin cancer which often occurs in patients who have a weakened immune response, such as people who have HIV or AIDs, the elderly and those taking medications which suppress the immune system. Kaposi's sarcoma will cause areas of your skin to turn purple or red. Many people who develop Kaposi's sarcoma often believe that they are suffering from a severe allergic reaction or skin rash. If you develop any kind of rash on your skin, you should see your dermatologist who will be able to carry out tests to establish the precise cause.

2. Subungal Melanoma

Subungal melanoma appears as a dark bruise underneath a toe or fingernail. Many people who develop subungal melanoma believe that they have injured the nail and that the bruise beneath is the result of trauma. As subungal melanoma progresses, the discolouration can spread throughout the entire nail, causing the nail to lift up and separate from the bed. If you develop any bruising on nails which have not been subjected to trauma or damage, you should book an appointment with your dermatologist so they can carry out an assessment to rule out the risk of skin cancer.

3. Actinic Cheilitis

Actinic cheilitis is a pre-cancerous condition which causes the lips to become dry, chapped and scaly. If left untreated, actinic cheilitis can develop into skin cancer which affects the mouth and face. The condition is caused by prolonged exposure to sunlight over an extended period. Many people who develop actinic cheilitis wrongly believe that they just have dry lips.

However, unlike dry lips, actinic cheilitis will not respond to treatments such as moisturisers and lip balm. If you develop a dry patch on your lip which does not respond to conventional treatments, you should make a trip to the dermatologist office so they can investigate further.

If you notice any of the changes outlined in this blog, you should make sure you see your local dermatologist today.