Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer, but a skin cancer diagnosis doesn’t have to be scary with the right team of physicians behind you. Clear Skin Dermatology in St. Charles, Oak Park, and Sycamore, Illinois, treat skin cancer with advanced researched-based treatments and diagnostic services. To learn more about skin cancer or to schedule a screening, call the nearest office or request an appointment online today.

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What is skin cancer?

Skin cancer occurs when certain cells within your skin grow uncontrollably. Some forms of skin cancer are benign and relatively easy to treat. Others can metastasize to areas of your body where they can do more damage.

Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer and it is the only cancer visible on the surface. You should report any suspicious spots or lesions to your dermatologist as soon as possible.

The most common cause of skin cancer is UV light. This is the type of light that comes from the sun, so it’s important to use sunscreen every day to protect your skin and avoid prolonged sun exposure. UV light also comes from tanning beds, so you should avoid them.

Which type of skin cancer do I have?

Your specific skin cancer diagnosis depends on the type of cell that becomes cancerous. During your appointment at Clear Skin Dermatology, the team assesses the lesion in question and may take a sample of it for a biopsy. They frequently treat:

Basal cell carcinoma

Basal cell carcinoma originates in the basal cells within your skin. These cells are located in your epidermis and shed away as new basal cells grow.

Basal cell carcinoma usually occurs in areas of skin that get a lot of sun exposure. They can look like pink growths, scar tissue, or open sores.

Squamous cell carcinoma

Squamous cell carcinoma originates in the squamous cells, which are flat and near the surface of your skin. Like basal cells, they shed as new cells form and take their place.

The lesions can look like scaly red patches, open sores, or thick skin.


Melanoma is a more dangerous form of skin cancer. It occurs in your melanocytes, which give your skin its pigment.

Melanoma can take the form of a new mole or occur in a spot that’s already on your skin, causing changes in its color, borders, or elevation.

Actinic keratoses

Actinic keratoses are precancerous lesions that have not yet become cancerous but might in the future.

What are my treatment options for skin cancer?

Clear Skin Dermatology designs a personalized treatment plan for your skin cancer or precancerous lesion. They discuss your options with you and help you choose the one with the best possible outcome for your case. Available treatments for skin cancer include:


Cryosurgery involves freezing the cancerous or precancerous lesion off of your skin. Your provider applies very cold liquid nitrogen to the lesion. This method is usually used with other treatments if the lesion is cancerous, but it’s a great option by itself for actinic keratoses.

Levulan® blue light therapy

Before undergoing blue light therapy, you take a medication that makes your skin ultra-sensitive to the light. Once your provider applies the light, it destroys the cancerous cells within the uppermost layers of your skin.

Other treatments

For deeper, more aggressive forms of skin cancer like melanoma, your provider might recommend chemotherapy or radiation treatments. These treatments are used to fight cancer cells that spread to other areas.

Book your skin cancer evaluation by phone or request a appointment online at Clear Skin Dermatology today.