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How can I prevent a recurrence of skin cancer?

Once you’ve had one skin cancer, your risk of getting another goes up. Don’t just cross your fingers.

  • Start doing monthly skin self-exams. If you find any marks on your body that you’ve never noticed before or that look strange, see your dermatologist.
  • Set up a series of skin-cancer appointments: If you had a basal or squamous cell, you need to be checked every six months; if you had a melanoma, you should be checked more frequently. Your doctor can tell you exactly how frequently based on your particular situation and the size of your melanoma (for more information, check the American Cancer Society’s site).
  • Speak with your doctor about lowering your odds of a recurrence by starting on a prescription retinoid cream, either Retin-A or Tazorac. These vitamin-A derivatives work deep in the dermis to reverse sun damage, and may stop misguided basal cells and squamous cells from developing into cancer.

From The Mind-Beauty Connection: 9 Days to Less Stress, Gorgeous Skin, and a Whole New You by Amy Wechsler.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.