What is Actinic Keratosis
Spending hours in the sunshine can be a pleasant way to pass the day, but years of sun exposure can lead to rough, scaly patches on the skin called actinic keratosis (AK). AK is caused by UV radiation and can become cancerous if left untreated. AKs appear as elevated skin spots ranging in color from flesh colored to white, pink, dark tan or red. They can resemble warts and commonly occur on the face, ears, shoulders, neck, hands, shins and forearms, areas that receive high levels of UV exposure.
ARE AKS CANCEROUS?
AKs typically start out as a small rough, scaly skin patch that enlarges slowly without additional symptoms. In some cases they may itch or feel tender. They may take years to develop. Due to the possibility of the lesions becoming cancerous, it is not uncommon to remove AKs as a precautionary measure. AKs primarily occur in adults over the age of 40.
If you feel you may have actinic keratosis but are unsure, come see us for a thorough consultation and state-of-the-art laser treatments like Levulan Photodynamic Therapy or Fraxel laser resurfacing.