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Actinic keratosis is a lesion on the skin caused by Ultra Violet (UV) light. Actinic keratosis is precancerous, meaning it can lead to skin cancer. Most often, actinic keratosis turns into to squamous cell carcinoma, which is a type of skin cancer. Continue reading this article for more information about the warning signs of actinic keratosis. If you have any of these signs, you should see a dermatologist immediately. While it can be hard to tell whether these growths are benign or malignant, it is in your best interest to see a doctor anytime you notice a new growth.

Growths on the Face

It is most common for actinic keratosis , or keratoses, to appear on the face or head. On the forehead and scalp, keratoses look like red bumps and tan crusts. The lesions are characterized with a crusted appearance. Many times, they will go unnoticed at first and are only noticed when they are felt by running fingertips over the crusted area. The lesions have many different appearances and range in color from brown to red. It is common for the growths to appear on the ears, neck, and lips, in addition to the face and scalp.

Growths on Hands

Since actinic keratosis is found on areas of the body that are most commonly exposed to UV light, keratoses are commonly found on hands. It is common to find thick, red patches on the back of the hand. The scaly lesions are usually found scattered on the backs of hands.

If you have signs of actinic keratosis, it means you have sustained sun damage to your skin. Sun damaged skin can lead to cancer, so it is important to see a dermatologist if you begin to notice red, scaly lesions on your face or hands. The dermatologists at Arlington Dermatology are skilled in treating a variety of skin conditions including melanoma, and specialize in skin cancer treatment in Arlington Heights. Call 847-392-5440 to schedule an appointment today.

woman with feet in the sun