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Doctor insights on: Caroline Aks

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Do aks itch?

Do aks itch?

Not usually: If you are having itching or the aks are spreading, consult your dermatologist. ...Read more

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Do aks grow without sun?

Do aks grow without sun?

AKs: Chronic sun exposure is the cause of almost all actinic keratoses. Sun damage to the skin is cumulative, so even a brief period in the sun adds to the lifetime total. Cloudy days aren’t safe either, because 70-80 percent of solar ultraviolet (uv) rays can pass through clouds. These harmful rays can also bounce off sand, snow and other reflective surfaces, giving you extra exposure. ...Read more

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Itchy growths all over skin? Aks?

Difficult to say: Aks are not usually itchy. But they can be. If they are "all over" meaning they are also on skin usually covered by clothing then that makes them less likely to be aks. I would suggest you have them examined. ...Read more

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Can I use aldara (imiquimod) for aks?

Can I use aldara (imiquimod) for aks?

Yes: Aldara (imiquimod) is a very effective and safe treatment for aks. It can be used to treat a large surface area or a single lesion. Treatment period is usually 8-12 weeks. Recommend staying out of the sun during the treatment period because it makes you more sensitive to the sun and sunburn easier. Side-effects are redness and peeling which can be exacerbated by sun exposure. ...Read more

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What are therapeutic options for actinic keratoses aks?

What are therapeutic options for actinic keratoses aks?

Actinic keratosis: Treatment of actinic keratosis includes: cryotherapy or 5-fluoouracil or Imiquimod or photodynamic therapy or diclofenac or the new picato (ingenol mebutate). ...Read more

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Can freezing be used to remove aks and skin growths as well as warts?

Can freezing be used to remove aks and skin growths as well as warts?

Yes.: "freezing" means touching the skin with a liquid nitrogen-immersed cotton swab or spray. It works quite well, but you should only have this done by someone trained and experienced in its use, which is usually a dermatologist. ...Read more

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Thought patchy raised rashes were aks but now pinker and bigger, what could this be?

Thought patchy raised rashes were aks but now pinker and bigger, what could this be?

Not sure: This is the type of question which cannot be answered easily without seeing the rash. Suggest you show this to a doctor. ...Read more

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Aldara (imiquimod) for aks all over abdomen ok?

Aldara (imiquimod) for aks all over abdomen ok?

Test small area 1st: Aldara (imiquimod) can cause a very vigorous response in some patients so be careful to apply to a small area to see how you respond. Only if you don't have a severe reaction can you then treat a larger area. You can get quite sick (flu like symptoms) if you apply too much Aldara (imiquimod) (ie: entire face or large body par). Best to treat a small region (ie: nose or one hand or portion of the abdomen) at a time. ...Read more

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Saw derm 5days ago for cryo of small aks and cutting of possible basal on nose. How do I clean skin while healing? Daughter told aides to use peroxide

Saw derm 5days ago for cryo of small aks and cutting of possible basal on nose. How do I clean skin while healing? Daughter told aides to use peroxide

Water...not peroxide: Modern wound care theory suggests peroxide goes beyond killing the bacteria....It also kills the fibroblasts - cells that help wound healing. I suggest gently cleaning with a mild soap and water, and keeping the areas moisturized. Apply a little neosporin or Bacitracin can be helpful, although plain vaseline usually works just as well. ...Read more

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If I have loads of aks all over abdomen (bikini sun exposure 40yr ago), why wouldn't derm prescribe aldara (imiquimod)?

If I have loads of aks all over abdomen (bikini sun exposure 40yr ago), why wouldn't derm prescribe aldara (imiquimod)?

Not sure: Aldara (imiquimod) is used to treat warts but can also be used to treat ak's. However, there are other treatments that are used for ak's like freezing them off with liquid nitrogen, surgical removing them if irritated or hypertrophic or irritated, or other creams (topical chemotherapy) that are used for ak's. ...Read more

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Am 90. Avoided sun for 70 yr (hated my freckles). Saw derm today for cryo of small aks and cutting of possible basal on nose. How do I clean skin now?

Am 90. Avoided sun for 70 yr (hated my freckles). Saw derm today for cryo of small aks and cutting of possible basal on nose. How do I clean skin now?

Topical medications: Early superficial lesion can be brought to the surface with 5 fu cream, which comes in three strengths 5, 1' and. 5. This can treat the whole area at once and clear precancerous lesions. It does result in red mess for 1-2 months. A low fat diet has been shown in a study at univ of arizona to decrease new actinic keratosis. Laser resurfacing has a si i.Ar effec with li tied healing time. ...Read more

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What is actinic keratosis?

What is actinic keratosis?

Pre-cancer: Actinic keratosis is a pre-cancerous skin lesion. It's a scaly area that feels sharp, like sandpaper or a glass shard, when you rub your finger over it. If untreated, it can become a squamous cell carcinoma of the skin. It is usually from sun damage. To treat it, liquid nitrogen or a cream called effudex is applied. Avoid sun exposure to avoid this! ...Read more

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What are symptoms of actinic keratosis?

Actinic Keraotsis: Actinic keratoses arise in chronically sun exposed sites, such as the backs of the hands, forearms and face. They usually present as rough scaly or crusty slightly red bumps on the skin. Sometimes, these lesions can be felt more than they can be seen. A rough patch on a sun exposed area may all that you notice. ...Read more

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How can I make actinic keratosis go away?

How can I make actinic keratosis go away?

Dermatologist appt: Unfortunately there is no studied over the counter treatment for actinic keratosis (ak). Since ak is a form of precancer, it is important to have it treated before it progresses. There are available treatments through a dermatologist that are effective (some topical, some freezing technique). ...Read more

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How is actinic keratosis usually diagnosed?

How is actinic keratosis usually diagnosed?

Clinical exam: Actinic keratoses are early precancerous lesions caused primarily by sun exposure over time. They are usually diagnosed by your dermatologist on clinical exam. In some cases a more advanced lesion may be biopsied to make sure it has not progressed to skin cancer. ...Read more

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What does actinic keratosis usually look like?

What does actinic keratosis usually look like?

Scaly red papules: Actinic keratosis is a premalignant lesion that over time can evolve into squamous or basal cell carcinomas. They are usually small persistent crusty or scaly pink-red bumps. These are typically treated with liquid nitrogen destruction or topical creams such as Efudex or aldara (imiquimod). ...Read more

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Who is at generally risk for actinic keratosis?

H/o sunburns: Actinic keratoses are precancerous lesions caused by excessive sun exposure. The more sunburns you've had, the more risk of developing ak's. ...Read more

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Do all cases of actinic keratosis turn into scc?

Do all cases of actinic keratosis turn into scc?

No: In fact, relatively few of them do so. However, if you have been diagnosed with an ak, it is best to make sure you follow the recommended schedule of appointments with the doctor following your skin health. If you notice ulceration, bleeding, itching, or sudden spreading of an ak, get it checked out asap. ...Read more

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Does all cases of actinic keratosis need freezing?

Freeze, 5FU, Aldara (imiquimod): Actinic keratosis (ak) is a premalignant condition caused chiefly by sun exposure. If left untreated, ak can progress to squamous cell cancer of the skin. Treatments of ak include freezing using liquid nitrogen; 5-fu chemo cream; immune modifier cream aldara (imiquimod)... ...Read more

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How can I reduce the appearance and the feel of actinic keratosis?

None: Unfortunately there is no studied over the counter treatment for actinic keratosis (ak). Since ak is a form of precancer, it is important to have it treated before it progresses. There are available treatments through a dermatologist that are effective (some topical, some freezing technique). ...Read more

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Is laser actinic keratosis removal possible?

Is laser actinic keratosis removal possible?

Yes: Actinic keratoses are pre-cancerous skin lesions caused by sun exposure. Various treatments can be used, including liquid nitrogen (freezing), topical creams (imiquimod, fluoruracil, others), curettage (scraping), and medium-depth chemical peels. Laser treatments include co2 laser ablation and photodynamic therapy (laser treatment after application of a medication to the skin). ...Read more

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Is a small rough whitish patch of skin always actinic keratosis?

Is a small rough whitish patch of skin always actinic keratosis?

No: A rough white patch of skin could be attributed to many possibilities including sun damage, actinic keratosis, eczema, psoriasis, seborrheic dermatitis, contact dermatitis, superficial skin cancer (squamous cell carcinoma, basal cell carcinoma), tinea (fungal infection). ...Read more

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I heard actinic keratosis is pre-cancerous. How long would it take one to turn into ca?

I heard actinic keratosis is pre-cancerous. How long would it take one to turn into ca?

Varies: This is like asking how long it takes a child to turn into an adult, in some ways. It takes much longer for a 2 year old to turn into an adult than a teenager. We think it takes a number of years to convert, but I have seen patients treated for an actinic keratosis return with a squamous cancer in that area in less than a year. Was it really an actinic keratosis or was it an early squamous cell? ...Read more

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Is melanoma the same as actinic keratosis?

No.: An actinic keratosis is a premalignant lesion that may progress to develop into a squamous cell carcinoma. A melanoma is a malignant tumor involving the pigment cells (melanocytes) of the skin. ...Read more

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Can actinic keratosis be scraped clearly off by fingers?

Many of them can: Same with seborrheic keratoses / basal cell papillomas. However, you'll never get the base where the mutated cells are. Treat them with excision or topical meds that kill the mutated cells. ...Read more

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What is bowenoid actinic keratosis? Same as bowens disease?

Bowen disease: Bowenoid actinic keratosis is in-situ squamous cell carcinoma arising in actinic keratosis. Yes, it is also known as bowen disease. This is the earliest form (stage) of squamous cell skin cancer. ...Read more