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Red heads may be at a higher risk for Basal Cell Carcinoma
Redheads appear to be at the highest risk for developing multiple basal cell carcinomas (BCC), according to a Dutch population-based study.
Dr Marcy Street, a board certified dermatologist and the first African American female MOHS surgeon in the United States is not surprised at the findings, but warns that persons with all types of skin, fair to dark, are at risk of BCC. ‘While it isn’t surprising that the Dutch study found redheads to be at higher risk, the fact remains that anyone can get BCC, regardless of how fair or how dark their skin is. The principle recommendation I make to all my patients is that they get checked immediately if they believe they have a lesion or any of the other indicators that could be the early warning sign of BCC. It can mean the difference between life and death if people check themselves regularly.’
Risk factors for developing a first BCC lesion include age, male sex, race, and genetic predisposition, factors that may interact with environmental exposures such as ultraviolet light, the researchers explained. Among two-thirds of the cohort, the most common BCC lesion site was the head or neck; more than half were of the nodular subtype.
‘People need to get checked if they have anything going on abnormally with their skin. Early detection of cancer is the best way to ensure its effective treatment. A skin check appointment is easier than most other doctors’ appointments because we are looking, not probing orifices.
Marcy L. Street, M.D. is a board-certified, Mayo Clinic trained dermatologist, is also a fellowship trained Mohs surgeon. She is an expert on skin cancer screening and treatment. Her highly respected group practice, Doctor’s Approach Dermatology and Laser Center, based in Lansing, Michigan, focuses on medical, surgical and cosmetic dermatology. The clinic has offered laser, acne, skin cancer prevention treatments and other medical skin care services since 1992.
Visit the website: www.DAderm.com.
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Doctor’s Approach is a full-service medical and surgical dermatology clinic with a cosmetic medical spa. Our dermatology practice has been well established and respected for over 15 years, with patients visiting from all over the Midwest region.