Skin Cancer

skin cancer

Early detection is key.

Your first and best defense against skin cancer is to protect yourself with sunscreen. Dr. Friedrichs urges you to apply it every day to exposed areas to guard against the harmful effects of ultraviolet radiation. If skin cancer does develop, it most commonly forms in the epidermis, or the outermost layers of skin, which means a tumor is usually clearly visible. This makes most skin cancers detectable in the early stages.
If you have spots that appear to be changing in shape, size, or color, make an appointment for a skin check with Dr. Friedrichs right away.

Types of Skin Cancer

There are three main types of skin cancer. Each of these three cancers begin in a different type of cell within the skin, and each cancer is named for the type of cell in which it begins. Skin cancers are divided into one of two classes – nonmelanoma skin cancers and melanoma. Melanoma is the deadliest form of skin cancer.

Basal Cell Carcinoma (BCC)

The most common cancer in humans, basal cell carcinoma develops in more than 1 million people every year in the United States alone. About 80 percent of all skin cancers are BCC. BCC can take several forms:

  • A shiny, translucent or pearly nodule
  • A sore that continuously heals and then re-opens
  • A pink, slightly elevated growth
  • Reddish, irritated patches of skin
  • A waxy scar

Most BCCs appear on skin with a history of exposure to the sun, such as the face, ears, scalp, and upper trunk. While these tumors very rarely metastasize, Dr. Friedrichs encourages early diagnosis and treatment to prevent extensive damage to surrounding tissue.

Squamous Cell Carcinoma (SCC)

About 16 percent of diagnosed skin cancers are squamous cell carcinoma. About 200,000 cases are diagnosed every year. SCC tends to develop in fair-skinned, middle-aged and elderly people who have had long-term sun exposure. It most often appears as a crusted or scaly area of skin with a red, inflamed base that resembles a growing tumor, non-healing ulcer, or crusted-over patch of skin.
While post commonly found on sun-exposed areas of the body, it can develop anywhere, including the inside of the mouth and the genitalia. SCC requires early treatment to keep it from spreading.


Accounting for about 4 percent of all diagnosed skin cancers, melanoma is the most lethal form of skin cancer because it can rapid spread to the lymph system and internal organs. In the United States alone, approximately one person dies from melanoma every hour. Older Caucasian men have the highest mortality rate.
With early detection and proper treatment, however, the cure rate for melanoma is about 95 percent. Once it spreads, unfortunately the prognosis is much worse. Come in for a skin check with Dr. Friedrichs to better understand what your moles look like so you can detect changes to existing moles and spot new moles.

Do you want to minimize your risk for skin cancer?

Contact us to schedule a consultation with Dr. Friedrichs today!

Schedule a consultation with Dr. Friedrichs to find out what treatments are right for you.


Radiant Dermatology
(815) 981-4990
1740 Mediterranean Dr. Unit 102
Sycamore, IL