One of the biggest squamous cell carcinoma risk factors for residents of Clearwater, Florida, and throughout the state is repeated exposure to ultraviolet rays, such as from the sun or an indoor tanning booth. Exposure to these harmful rays does not always indicate that a person will develop skin cancer. However, it is important to be mindful of your risk factors and watch for skin changes so that cancer can be detected and treated in its earliest stages.
The majority of other squamous cell carcinoma risk factors are also associated with large amounts of exposure to UV rays. For example:
- Males are almost three times more likely to develop squamous cell carcinoma than females, which is often attributed to their higher tendency to spend more time outdoors without sufficient sun protection.
- Older individuals tend to develop squamous cell carcinoma more frequently than younger individuals, which is due to the effects of UV damage over a person’s lifetime.
- Individuals with fair skin or freckles are more prone to sunburns, increasing their risk of having cell damage from UV light.
- Those with xeroderma pigmentosum – an inherited condition that causes an extreme sensitivity to sunlight – are also more susceptible to developing squamous cell carcinoma.
- Inflammatory skin conditions such as psoriasis are often treated using UV light, so individuals receiving these treatments may be at a higher risk for developing squamous cell carcinoma.
Additional risk factors include exposure to arsenic, coal tar or other carcinogens. Those who have already been diagnosed with skin cancer are also at a higher risk for developing a second skin cancer at some point in their life.
Individuals who have one or more of these risk factors are encouraged to make regular skin cancer screenings a part of their health care routine. Clearwater, FL, residents who have questions about squamous cell carcinoma are welcome to come to Moffitt Cancer Center. The experts in our Cutaneous Oncology Program have a high level of experience in detecting and treating patients with squamous cell carcinoma, and will develop an individualized course of treatment for each patient to give them the best chance at a favorable outcome and an improved quality of life.
If you live in the Clearwater, FL, area and would like to speak to an expert about your individual squamous cell carcinoma risk factors, call 1-888-663-3488 or fill out a new patient registration form online. You do not need a referral to come to Moffitt.