Actinic Keratosis & Sun Damage

There are many skin conditions that exist as a result of of over exposure to the sun. Some of them may be harmless such as age spots, liver spots or pigmentation while others may need medical attention immediately. One such skin condition is keratosis. This condition comes about after keratin production has been triggered to increase by one cause or the other. This causes the skin to become hard and rough. Keratosis appears in many forms and one of them is actinic keratosis.

Actinic Keratosis

Due to overexposure to the sun, the skin may form small bumps. These are the bumps that are referred to as actinic keratosis or solar keratosis.  These spots can form in singles or in a group. The spots are usually red, pink or your mimic your skin color. With such a case, these spots are felt rather than seen. They are also known to be a combination of the colors mentioned above. They may be small, comparable to a pinhead or as large as 2cm across. These spots may go to the extent of developing into a growth that looks like a horn which is referred to as a cutaneous horn.

There have been reported cases where these spots found in one area, merge into one big patch of rough bumpy skin. This case is seen more in skin that has been exposed for too long in the sun. Areas on the body that have high chances of developing this condition are like the ears, back of the hands, neck and even bald patches on the head. Other areas may be the legs, arms and back, but this is seen more in people who enjoy sunbathing and tanning a lot. Two symptoms that you may be developing this condition are a slight itchiness in the area of even a tingling sensation and rough texture.

Actinic Keratosis Treatment

Actinic keratosis is a skin condition that can sometimes clear on its own but you should always consult a dermatologist who will advise if it requires treatment with either surgical removal or an actinic keratosis removal cream. This is often the case even if it’s only one spot that you have. You should always get it checked out, especially if its appearance or texture changes. It may be an indication that something may be wrong.

Another method of actinic keratosis treatment is through cryosurgery. This is the use of liquid nitrogen to freeze tissue. It is said that this form of nitrogen is so cold that it kills living tissue. Once it is sprayed, an actinic keratosis spot will dry and fall off a few days later.

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