Kingsport (423)246-4961 | Bristol (423)764-7131 | Johnson City (423)928-9014

Cancerous Lesions

Cancerous Lesions

Our dermatologists provide precision surgical removal of all types of cancerous skin lesions, including basal cell cancer, squamous cell cancer and melanoma.

Detection and Treatment of Skin Cancer

The easiest way to spot skin cancer early is by doing a full skin exam once a month. It should be done while you are fully unclothed, in front of a mirror, and under a bright light. Start with your scalp and face and work your way down your entire body. Be sure to check your front and back, especially in the sun-exposed areas. Look for any new growths, dark lesions, bleeding lesions, or changing moles.

Self Check ABCDEs

An easy way to remember what to look for when doing the self-check for melanoma is to remember your ABCDEs.

  • Asymmetry: If you draw a line down the middle of the lesion and both sides don't match in size and shape, then it needs to be evaluated by a dermatologist.
  • Border: Irregular, poorly defined borders may be a worrisome sign.
  • Color: Varying colors, such as differing shades of brown or black can be concerning.
  • Diameter: Melanomas are usually larger than the size of a pencil eraser (1/4 inch), but they may sometimes be smaller when first detected.
  • Evolving: Any change in shape, size, color, or elevation, or a new symptom, such as itching, crusting or bleeding, is cause for concern and requires evaluation by your dermatologist. 

For most people with "typical" sun exposure, performing the ABCDE exam every month, in conjunction with a yearly exam by your physician, should be adequate to catch potential skin cancer. If you have had skin cancer in the past, ask your dermatologist how often you should be followed, as it will vary depending on type and past treatment. But regardless of your history, if you find a lesion that causes concern, make an appointment with a dermatologist immediately to have it evaluated.

So, what happens if you find something worrisome and you make an appointment with a dermatologist? The first thing they will do is obtain information about the lesion and perform an examination. A biopsy (sampling of the lesion) may be suggested if the lesion appears suspicious.

The three most common types of skin cancer are:

  • Basal cell carcinoma
  • Squamous cell carcinoma
  • Melanoma

Treatment options depend on a variety of factors including the type of skin cancer, its characteristics (depth, size, etc.) and the location on the body. It is important to remember that skin cancer is a very common health concern, but there are healthy steps you can take in order to decrease your risk.


To schedule an appointment for an examination by one of our providers, call us at one of our locations listed below. 

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