The invisible danger: skin cancer! The details & dangers around the </title>

If you include all forms of skin cancer together, then it is the most common tumor in humans at all! The Viennese dermatologist and senior physician at the University Department of Dermatology, Dr. med. Rainer Kunstfeld (, in an interview on early detection, examination and treatment options. WOMAN: How often do I have to go to the dermatologist? Dr. Art field: Basically, a healthy person without special risk factors should look at the entire skin once a year. People who have a very light skin type (type 1), often sunburns or many irregular birthmarks, should go to the dermatologist several times a year, especially if birthmarks change. Only the dermatologist can certainly differentiate between harmless birthmarks and malignant lesions. WOMAN: What research methods are available? Dr. Art field: A major technical innovation is the so-called dermatoscopy. Here you can look into the skin with a specific loupe system and get much more information from the smallest details of the birthmark. So you can detect malignant changes at an early stage. WOMAN: Relatively new is the digital dermoscopy … Dr. Artfeld: Yes, here the magnifying glass system is connected to the computer. The moles can be viewed, measured and stored on the screen. In this way, one can recognize changes or developments of a mole in the direction of a malignant skin tumor very well. WOMAN: What types of skin cancer are there? Dr. Art field: Melanoma, also known as "black" skin cancer, is well known worldwide. The tumor is noticeable by brown to black spots or knots and is very aggressive. As this skin cancer metastasizes, it must be immediately and radically operated. Depending on the thickness of the tumor, a "safety margin" is surgically removed, ie the thicker the melanoma is, the more healthy skin in the area must be cut away. WOMAN: And the white skin cancer? Dr. Art field: This skin cancer is often underestimated, although it is now the most common tumor in humans. In Austria, the annual growth rates for this cancer are already 5 percent. The white skin cancer arises mainly through years of chronic sun exposure, typically on the forehead, nose, shoulders, hands, forearms and ears. WOMAN: How do you recognize the "white" skin cancer? Dr. Art field: In early stages, it is usually reddish spots and minimally sublime spots on the skin. The surface is typically rough and acts like a "sandpaper" when painted over. More advanced forms are usually sublime and / or nodular. White skin cancer rarely causes metastases in other organs, but if left untreated, can penetrate deep into the body and destroy bones, eyes, ears and nose. It is important that the skin cancer does not occur individually, but in groups in groups, since not only a single point on the skin, but a whole area is damaged by the sunlight. In case of doubt, the dermatologist should be visited here in any case. WOMAN: How can you treat skin cancer? Dr. Art Field: The black skin cancer is surgically removed. In early forms of white skin cancer, cryotherapy can be used. The tumor is frozen with liquid nitrogen (-100 degrees) and thus destroyed. However, the procedure is painful and can lead to disturbing scars. Another option is local chemotherapy. However, the trend is towards medical creams. Ingredients such as imiquimod specifically activate the immune system of the skin, which subsequently destroys the tumor cells. A big advantage of this procedure is that no scars remain behind. Editor: Christine Ziechert