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What Are the Symptoms of Nonmelanoma Skin Cancer?

Various cancerous lumps

Most skin cancers appear as a new growth or as a change in the size or in the color of a growth you've had. These changes can happen slowly or rapidly. Some growths may appear as sores that never go away, or the growths may bleed.

Basal cell carcinoma may have one or more of these features.

  • A small, raised bump that is shiny or has a pearly appearance. Often you may also notice small blood vessels in it.

  • A small, flat spot that is scaly, irregularly shaped, and pale, pink, or red.

  • A spot that bleeds briefly, heals up and appears to have disappeared, but then starts to bleed again in a few weeks.

  • Often grows slowly.

Squamous cell carcinoma may have one or more of these features.

  • A rough bump that appears, then rapidly grows.

  • Flat, red patches on the skin that are irregularly shaped. The patches may or may not bleed.

Although these are symptoms of skin cancer, they may also be caused by other less serious problems. If you have any of these symptoms, see your doctor.


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