Types of Skin Cancer

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What you should know?

There are three types of skin cancer: Basal Cell Carcinoma, Squamous Cell Carcinoma and Malignant Melanoma. Melanoma is the 5th most commonly diagnosed cancer in Colorado and the most deadly form of skin cancer. In Colorado alone, about 117 residents die each year of melanoma and in 2009 alone, it was estimated that 1,260 Coloradans were diagnosed with melanoma. Please take some time to go over these quick facts about skin cancer below and if you notice any of the signs listed below, contact our office at 970.673.1155 to schedule a consultation.

Basal Cell

  • Most common
  • Slow-growing
  • 85% occur on face and neck
  • Raised pink or pearly white bump with small, visible blood vessels near edge
  • Pigmented bumps that look like moles with a pearly edge
  • Sores that continuously heals and reopens
  • Flat scaly scar with waxy appearance and blurred edges
  • Tend to bleed

Squamous Cell Carcinoma

  • Crusty or scaly patch of skin with an inflamed, red base
  • Can occur anywhere including inside of the mouth, but most frequently on scalp, face, ears and back of hands

Malignant Melanoma

  • Most deadly
  • Spreads rapidly to internal organs and lymph system
  • Looks like moles and often grow inside existing moles
  • Change to size, shape or color of mole


Our providers believe that patient education is the key to early diagnosis of skin cancer. Yearly physician-directed, full body skin exams are recommended and monthly self-exams are encouraged. To schedule your annual exam, please call please call 970.673.1155


Tips for Sun Protection

  • Apply sunscreen of at least SPF 15 is strongly advised
  • Cover up with light-colored clothing and a hat when exposed to sunlight
  • Wear sunglasses to prevent UV damage to eyes
  • Avoid prolonged periods of sun exposure and sun burns. It is important to use extra caution near reflecting water, snow and sand
  • Avoid tanning beds

To learn more about the many dermatology services we provide, or to schedule your appointment at our Fort Collins, Loveland, Greeley or Ft. Morgan office, call us today at (970) 673-1155.