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What is the treatment for skin cancer?

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Finding and treating skin cancer quickly is considered a cure. The type of skin cancer you have and how much it has spread, as well as your other health issues, will help your doctor decide how to treat it.

They may use one or more different ways to remove, kill, or stop the cancer cells from growing:

If the usual treatment doesn't work or it's difficult for you, you may be able to find a clinical trial. These test new ways to treat cancers that could be more effective or have lesser side effects.

Once you've had a skin cancer, like basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma, there's a good chance it will come back or you'll get a new tumor within a few years, so you'll need to get your skin checked regularly to catch it early.

  • Surgery
  • Cryotherapy
  • Radiation
  • Chemotherapy or photochemotherapy
  • Laser therapy
  • Biologic or immunotherapy
  • Targeted therapy

From: What Is Skin Cancer? WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

American Academy of Dermatology: "Skin Cancer."

National Cancer Institute: "Skin Cancer," "Skin Cancer Treatment (PDQ®) - Patient Version: Treatment Options."

American Cancer Society: "Skin Cancer: Basal and Squamous Cells," "Melanoma Skin Cancer."

Reviewed by Stephanie S. Gardner on September 10, 2017

SOURCES:

American Academy of Dermatology: "Skin Cancer."

National Cancer Institute: "Skin Cancer," "Skin Cancer Treatment (PDQ®) - Patient Version: Treatment Options."

American Cancer Society: "Skin Cancer: Basal and Squamous Cells," "Melanoma Skin Cancer."

Reviewed by Stephanie S. Gardner on September 10, 2017

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THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

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