Cochise Oncology

Share This Post

How to Prevent Skin Cancer

Skin cancer is a growing public health concern that will affect 20 percent of Americans at some point in their lives. Fortunately, the five-year survival rate for early-detection melanoma is 99 percent – higher than almost every other type of cancer. 

You can cut your risk of developing skin cancer by reducing your exposure to direct sunlight (especially during the middle of the day), abstaining from tanning beds, and using sunscreen.

Tucson Skin Cancer

Types of Skin Cancer

There are several types of skin cancer we frequently encounter at Cochise Oncology.

Basal cell carcinoma

This type of skin cancer typically develops in sun-exposed areas of skin, such as the top of the head, neck, and face. Symptoms include bleeding or scabbing patches that frequently return, pearly and waxy bumps, and brown scar-like lesions

Squamous cell carcinoma

This form of skin cancer can affect anyone, but is more likely among patients with darker skin in areas infrequently exposed to the sun. The disease manifests as flat lesions with crusted surfaces and small, firm, red nodules. 


Melanoma tends to develop differently depending on gender, forming on the face in men and on the lower legs in women. Signs include moles that change color or size, painful lesions that itch, and dark patches on the hands, feet, and mucus membranes in the mouth, vagina, or anus. 

Rarer types of skin cancer include Kaposi sarcoma, which develops in the blood vessels that supply the skin, Merkel cell cancer, which produces firm, shiny nodules, and sebaceous gland carcinoma which is a type of cancer that begins in the oil glands in your skin.


Simply fill out the form on this page to request an appointment and one of our knowledgable team members will reach out to you. Or call our Sierra Vista oncology center to schedule directly at (520) 803-6644.

3 Tips for Preventing Skin Cancer

Fortunately, there are several small lifestyle modifications you can use to dramatically lower your risk of developing any of these forms of skin cancer. 

1. Wear Sunscreen

Sunscreen prevents UV rays from damaging the delicate DNA and protein structures in your cells. Mineral-based formulations create a physical barrier between incoming sunlight and your skin, while chemical formulations soak into the skin and absorb excess energy via chemical reactions.

2. Limit Sun Exposure

Limiting sun exposure is a highly effective way to cut the chances of skin cancer. Just five burns throughout your lifetime are sufficient to double the risk of developing melanoma. 

3. Avoid Tanning Beds

Tanning beds use concentrated UV radiation to stimulate the production of melanin – the dark pigment that produces a tan. Unfortunately, this radiation is identical to that which comes from the sun and, therefore, also damages the skin.

The Importance of Skin Cancer Screenings

Getting regular skin cancer screenings is essential. The five-year survival rate for patients who catch skin cancer early is 99 percent. 

At Cochise Oncology, oncologists carefully examine your skin for signs of cancer and recommend biopsies if they find anything suspicious. 

Skin Cancer Treatments

Cochise Oncology offers a range of skin cancer treatments, including radiation and chemotherapy. Xoft®, for instance, is a specialized form of radiation treatment that uses a small pen-shaped device to selectively target skin lesions while preserving surrounding tissue.


*Individual Results May Vary


At Cochise Oncology, we know optimal cancer treatment places the patient first – and our patients experience this every day. Read what our satisfied patients are saying about their experiences at Cochise Oncology.

Take the Next Step

Are you ready to learn more about skin cancer? Reach out to Cochise Oncology at (520) 803-6644 or fill out the consultation form on this page. We look forward to meeting you!

More To Explore