Not always is a mole the sign of cancer. In normal circumstances, a usual mole or progressive growth which doesn’t heal is taken as a sign of impending cancer. However there is more to cancerous warning signals than just a mole. There are several different skin problems that warrant immediate medical attention as they too can be signs of cancer. Here are the most important of them.
1. Skin Rashes
Rare blood cancers are characterized by stubborn skin rashes that appear like eczema and cause incessant fierce itching. The rash can become extremely severe and result in flaking and peeling. The biggest disadvantage of such a condition is the poor response to topical solutions and steroids commonly used in the treatment of skin rashes.
2. Mycosis Fungoid or Lymphoma the main causes of stubborn skin rash
The main cause of such skin conditions involving severe rashes is mycosis fungoid. Medically termed as a Lymphoma, it is a kind of blood cancer which results from an excessive Lymphocyte count or white blood cells. Sometimes, if there is a bone marrow disease or an autoimmune condition, then this can cause an abnormal increase of white blood cells leading to a cancerous condition.
The progress of Mycosis fungoid in its malignant stages feature aggressive cells that spread over the entire body. In such a condition described as Sezary syndrome, treatment yields little result.
A typical violet type of rash appearing on the upper eyelid could also be the sign of kidney or ovarian cancer. It can also be seen in areas that are usually exposed to sunlight. Further signs are scaly bumps on knuckles, torn or separated cuticles and blood vessels appearing within folds of fingernails. The appearance of any of these skin problems and signs mean that you need to consult a doctor immediately.
3. Cutis Laxa or Loose skin with the look of kneaded dough
If your skin reflects a doughy sort of look and feels silky like kneaded bread,it could well mean a lymphoma or myeloma, a kind of blood cancer. The Doughy skin condition is called cutis laxa which results in degeneration of connective tissue.
4. Unusual Lumps or thickening of skin
Sometimes you may feel a noticeable lump under your skin. Such conditions are common at times on facial skin, the neck and extremities. More often than not, they are well pronounced in the groin, armpits, breasts and the lymph nodes which tend to swell. Breast lumps are characterized by mixed features. Sometimes they could be soft or rounded, with uneven contours or even be hard. In certain breast cancers, there is a marked skin inflammation.
Warning signs of breast cancers can also be scaling of skin in the area surrounding the breast or pain in the areola or nipples. Sometimes the nipple can dent inwards or there could be a dimple effect all around the breast similar to an orange skin.
Yellow skin in most cases means jaundice. During jaundice, bilirubin levels in the blood increase causing the yellow color. Jaundice is symptomatic of the following conditions.
Cancer of the liver or hepatitis
The largest organ in the body is the liver. It usually supports skin, protecting it from various diseases and symptoms as damaging agents are metabolized in the liver. However, too much pressure on the liver to perform as well as an improper lifestyle can lead to liver cancer. Termed as liver cirrhosis, it is caused when a liver malfunction develops from a disease like hepatitis. And then, liver cancer or terminal cirrhosis sets in.
Cancer of the pancreas
Islet cell tumors are the result of pancreatic cancer.The role of the pancreas is to manufacture insulin for breakdown of sugars to produce energy. Infection or disorders in the body are bad for pancreatic health and can lead to such endocrine tumors thus causing cancer.
6. Excessive hair or Hirsutism
Unwanted hair growth is termed as Hirsutism. In women, the condition dominates the facial and chest areas and is characterized by coarse extremely dark hair. Cancers that may cause such symptoms are ovarian cancer and cancer of the adrenal glands leading to excessive hormone build up.
7. Skin Cancer
Any unusual skin problems or appearance on the skin should be a warning sign to see a dermatologist. A mole larger than that of a pencil eraser with multiple colors should never be neglected as it is your body’s way of warning you that something is seriously wrong in your system. Moles that tend to get crusty and bleed are also impending signs of cancer and should never be neglected.