Cochise Oncology

Share This Post

Is Skin Cancer Curable?

If you have concerns that a skin spot might be something to worry about, you are not alone. Skin cancer is the most common cancer in the US, affecting one in five adults. Fortunately, diagnosing and treating skin cancer in its early stages can lead to complete removal. 

What is Skin Cancer?

Skin cancer occurs when different types of skin cells start to grow abnormally. Basal and squamous cell carcinomas form in layers of the skin. Melanoma, the most dangerous form of skin cancer, forms in cells called melanocytes that produce pigment. As a result, melanoma skin cancers often look like oddly shaped, colored, or sized moles. Basal and squamous cell carcinomas can look like bumps, flaky patches, or sores. They may have an odd color, itch, or refuse to heal. 

Is Skin Cancer Curable?

Skin cancer is highly treatable when discovered and removed early. People who have skin cancer removed before it spreads have a better than 99% survival rate. Basal and squamous cell carcinomas do not usually spread, but they can invade deeper layers of the skin. Melanoma is the most likely skin cancer to spread to other areas, such as lymph nodes. 

How is Skin Cancer Treated?

Skin cancer is often diagnosed with a biopsy, a sample of the potentially cancerous spot. If the biopsy indicates skin cancer, your team will assess whether the cancer is limited to your skin. If the skin cancer has not spread, it can be removed with several methods, including:

  • Topical (applied to the skin) chemotherapy
  • Cryotherapy to freeze cancer cells
  • Excision (removing the cancer cells with an incision)
  • Radiation therapy

Skin cancers that have progressed beyond the skin will be treated with a combination of treatments depending on your needs. Your treatment team may recommend chemotherapy, immunotherapy, radiation, or a combination of these. 


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.

What are the Risk Factors for Skin Cancer?

To become skin cancer, skin cells must have damage to their DNA that prevents them from controlling their growth. The largest part of this damage comes from DNA-breaking UV rays. Other risk factors for skin cancer include:

  • Family history
  • Fair skin and red or blonde hair
  • History of sunburns
  • A large number of moles
  • History of outdoor tanning or tanning beds

Even people with none of these risk factors can develop skin cancer. 

How Can You Prevent Skin Cancer?

Anyone can develop skin cancer, so the best protection is to make sure you know your skin’s “normal” and address any changes. A yearly skin cancer screening lets your doctor spot any changes and take action. Cancers caught during screening are usually in an early stage and are easily treatable.


*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

Do you have questions about skin cancer? Reach out to Cochise Oncology at (520) 803-6644 or fill out the consultation form on this page.

More To Explore