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What are the visual symptoms of skin cancer?

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Quick Answer

Visual symptoms of skin cancer include a raised, smooth and pearly looking bump on the skin, which usually appears on sun-exposed parts of the skin, such as the head, neck or shoulders, explains WebMD. Other visual symptoms include a well-defined, red, scaling, thickened bump on the skin.

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Full Answer

Symptoms of skin cancer often depend on whether the skin cancer is basal cell carcinoma or squamous cell carcinoma, explains WebMD. Basal cell carcinoma is characterized by the visible presence of small blood vessels within the tumor, a depression in the center of the growth along with crusting or bleeding, and a sore that does not tend to heal. Squamous cell carcinoma is characterized by a thickened bump on the skin, which may appear ulcerated and can bleed. If a squamous cell carcinoma is not treated, it can develop into a larger mass.

Basal cell carcinoma is the most-common form of skin cancer, and it comes in several types, including the superficial type, nodular type and morpheaform, explains MedicineNet. Although the nodular type is the most common, the morpheaform is the most difficult to treat because the tumors often infiltrate the surrounding tissue. Squamous cell carcinoma is a less-common form of skin cancer. Although it is biologically similar to basal cell carcinoma and has little risk of spreading, some of these tumors can be aggressive, metastasize and result in death.

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