What It Is

Actinic keratosis (AK) is a precancer that forms on the skin due to prolonged exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays from sun and/or indoor tanning. AKs often appear on sun-exposed areas of the skin such as face, nose, lips, ears, scalp, shoulders, neck, back and/or forearms and are often rough in texture and discolored. If left untreated, AKs can develop into squamous cell carcinoma, one of the most common types of non-melanoma skin cancers.

How DSCCA Can Help

Prevention is key! DSCCA encourages all to wear sunscreen daily and schedule a full-body skin screening at least once a year. It is important to monitor your skin regularly. You should look for anything new, changing or unusual on both sun-exposed and sun-protected skin. When you notice a change or a possible AK, schedule an appointment with a dermatologist to have the area checked. There are many forms of treatment and therapies that can be used to treat AKs prior to turning into skin cancer.