When you have a family history of the disease, screening for cancer is always advised. It would help to detect the cancer early and therefore decrease the risk of the disease succumbing. In certain patients, physicians do use some forms of screening tests to detect cancer. These are, however, largely confined to clinical trials that allow doctors to decide which individuals have the least chance of having cancer. The main advantage of a cancer screening test, however, is to identify the cancer before symptoms start to appear. It increases the chances of survival when patients receive early care for the disease and reduces the risk of dying from cancer. That is why it is highly important to provide a screening test for skin cancer. In fact , in the United States, skin cancer is very common, with 1 million individuals diagnosed with it each year. Phoenix Skin Treatment Association is one of the authority sites on this topic.
Skin cancer screening takes multiple steps and is not only limited to a laboratory examination. Physical skin examination can help diagnose skin cancer early on. Physicians recommend that patients check their skin for any odd changes every month, which should be immediately brought to their attention. Furthermore, all individuals who have already had skin cancer should have daily skin tests done by their physicians.
A biopsy would be done if the doctor discovers anything odd about a particular patch of skin. A part of the irregular skin is sent for inspection to the laboratory, where it is examined under the microscope by the pathologist to see whether the skin cells have turned malignant.
Typically, cancer can be identified without a biopsy, as skin melanomas appear to develop under the epidermis and never reach the dermis. If it has not metastasized to any other part of the body, it is possible to cure skin cancer.
However, when it comes to skin cancer screening tests, there are some risks involved. There may be several tests that may not be able to detect cancer. Just because cancer is identified by a screening test, it does not mean that your health will improve or you will live longer. If the cancer has entered an advanced phase, this is particularly true. There are no signs of certain skin cancers and they can never become life-threatening. However, they are treated when these cancers are detected by screening tests. There are some adverse side effects of cancer treatment that do not outweigh the benefits of the treatment. It is also possible that a false negative result will be provided by the screen test. At times, the test may indicate that when it is, cancer is not present and this may cause delays in having the right malignancy treatment. Another possibility is that when there is no cancer present, the screen test can show a false positive result. This causes the individual to undergo an unnecessary biopsy and then suffer from anxiety until it is conclusively diagnosed that the individual does not have cancer.