What are Keratosis Spots?

Actinic Keratosis or AK’s  are pencil point or eraser sized small rough patches that develop on the skin. This skin condition is usually caused by excess sun exposure and is also known as solar keratosis. Each skin spot is usually covered with a yellowish white skin buildup. This excess yellowish white skin can be very unattractive and painful and sore.

Another form of AK or actinic keratosis is known as cutaneous horns. This skin condition causes these spots to develop in thick, horn-like growths that stick out from the skin. It can also be seen around the lips; this type of keratosis causes the skin between the lip and the face to blur together as they are covered with a red thick scaly skin.

The areas of the skin that are usually affected are the face, nose, ears, forearms, back of the arms and chest. Keratosis spots are considered to have a 5% to 10% chance of becoming cancerous. These spots are considered to be pre-cancerous. They are also painful and uncomfortable. It is best to have these growths removed as quickly as possible.

The various types of Keratosis spots tend to occur in individuals with other signs of skin damage. Other skin damage is often seen such as superficial blood vessels and wrinkles. The surgery to remove the pre-cancerous spots is not considered an elective or cosmetic surgery rather it is a necessary surgery which will stop the threat of skin cancer such as melanoma. Removing the spots will eliminate their development into skin cancer.

Persons who have experienced AK should avoid additional sun exposure. Persons with fair skin are at a higher risk of developing keratosis and it is advised that they avoid spending excess time outdoors or exposing themselves excessively to indoor tanning.  Additional potential threats are posed to persons who have experienced suppressed immune systems and have been treated with ultraviolet lights and chemicals named psoralens for psoriasis.

These spots can be very painful as well as unattractive. They sometimes can vanish on their own but generally must be surgically removed. Avoiding excess sun exposure is one way to avoid the risk of developing additional Keratosis spots.

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4 Responses to “What are Keratosis Spots?”

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