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Golden State Cancer Centers - Cancer Radiation Therapy & Treatment | Serving West Hills - Woodland Hills - Los Angeles & Ventura County

21300 Erwin Street
Woodland Hills, CA 91367
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  • Caring Cancer Radiation Oncology Center

    People who care, treatment that works

  • State-Of-The-Art Cancer Radiation Treatment Center

    Combining State-Of-The-Art technology with the best physicians

  • Advanced Cancer Oncology Radiation Therapy

    Let our team of experts help you to live a healthy life, CANCER FREE

  • Los Angeles Cancer Radiation Treatment Center

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    Offering individualized treatment plans, and the highest quality of care to patients

  • Advanced Radiation Cancer Center

    Advanced technolgies, enhanced patient care

  • Comprehensive Cancer Radiation Therapy of Los Angeles

    Providing specialized patient services such as: Support Groups & Patient Navigator to be with you every step of the way!

How Do I Know If I Have Skin Cancer?

Most skin cancers can be seen on the surface of the skin, so it is important to perform self-checks and watch for unusual moles, lumps, sores, blemishes, markings, changes in the way skin looks or feels or spots that change in size, shape, sensation or color or don’t heal.

Basal cell carcinoma appears as a small, pink bump or patch. It is usually found on the head or neck, but may appear on any part of the body. Squamous cell carcinoma looks like basal cell carcinoma, but is usually more scaly and rough. It appears on the head, neck, ears, lips, backs of arms and hands and areas of the skin that have scars or ulcers.

When examining the skin, follow the ABCDEs for early skin cancer detection:

  • Asymmetry of the two sides of the lesion
  • Border irregularity
  • Color variegation (non-uniform color) 
  • Diameter greater than 1/4 “ (size of a pencil eraser)
  • Elevation: is the lesion growing in height?

The first step in diagnosing skin cancer is a medical exam, during which a physician examines the suspect spots. The physician may make a referral to a dermatologist for a more in-depth exam. As with other cancers, the only way to know for sure is with a biopsy—a procedure in which all or part of the tumor is sent to the lab to be examined under a microscope. The sample can be “shaved,” “punched” or cut from the skin.

Lymph nodes are olive-shaped glands that carry cancer from one area of the body to another. If it is suspected that the cancer has spread to the lymph nodes, these may be biopsied as well. If advanced melanoma is suspected, it may require a needle or surgical biopsy as well as chest x-rays, CT, MRI, PET, and/or bone scans to determine if it has spread to other areas of the body.