Skin Cancer, Nonmelanoma (cont.)
IN THIS ARTICLE
Home treatment after removal of a skin cancer includes regular use of skin protection measures to prevent a return (recurrence) of nonmelanoma skin cancer and regular exams to watch for suspicious skin changes.
Perform a skin self-exam once a month.
Certain medicines, such as some antibiotics or diuretics, can make your skin more sensitive to the sun's rays. Ask your doctor about this potential side effect of your medicines, and take extra precautions if necessary.
Medicines are rarely used to treat nonmelanoma skin cancer. Surgery is the most common and the most effective treatment. But when surgery is not possible, your doctor may suggest medicines. Medicines may also be used when a skin cancer is too large for surgery or when new skin cancers keep appearing.
Medicines that may be used to treat nonmelanoma skin cancer include:
People treated with medicines will need to have regular follow-up visits with their doctors to make sure the skin cancer is gone.
Chemotherapy may be used to destroy cancer cells in the small number of people who have basal cell or squamous cell carcinoma that has spread (metastasized) to other organs in the body, though metastasis is rare.
What To Think About
Medicines such as 5-FU and imiquimod may cause your skin to be sore. Your skin may turn red, swell, itch, or break out in a rash. Your skin may also be sensitive to sunlight. If your skin turns too red or raw, your doctor may stop the treatment.
How well medicines work for nonmelanoma skin cancer is not fully known. Studies are currently being done on the following medicines to find out their effectiveness.
eMedicineHealth Medical Reference from Healthwise
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