Buckhead Office

3379 Peachtree Rd NE, Suite 500

Atlanta, GA 30326

Mon. - Fri.: 7:30 am - 4:30 pm

Roswell Office

11755 Pointe Place, Suite B-2

Roswell, GA 30076

Mon. - Fri.: 7:30 am - 4:30 pm

Skin Cancer: Basal Cell Vs. Squamous Cell

Woman Getting Skin Cancer Screening Atlanta GA

Not all skin cancer is equal. There are different types of skin cancer, and you may already be familiar with the two most common ones: basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma. According to the American Cancer Society, over 5 million cases of basal cell and squamous cell cancers are diagnosed every year. Though basal cell carcinoma is responsible for nearly 80% of these cases, squamous cell carcinoma deserves to be known and understood as well. All skin cancers are more successfully treated if caught early. In terms of causes and symptoms, do you know the differences between basal cell and squamous cell carcinomas?

Basal Cell Carcinoma

Basal cell carcinoma begins in the basal cells. These are the cells within the skin that create new skin cells after old ones die. Malignancy occurs when one of the basal cells experiences a DNA mutation. The cause has been primarily linked to long-term exposure to sunlight or UV radiation in tanning beds. BCC often appears on the face, and senior citizens are the most common age group to be diagnosed.

BCC Symptoms

Basal cell carcinoma can be mistaken for non-cancerous conditions, such as psoriasis or eczema. This abnormal, uncontrolled growth on the skin can appear like an open sore, red patch of skin, a shiny bump or scar. Basal cell carcinomas typically do not spread, but they can be disfiguring if not treated appropriately.

Squamous Cell Carcinoma

Squamous cell carcinoma develops in the flat squamous cells within the outer layer of the skin. They are skin cells found throughout your entire body. Squamous cell carcinoma is not life-threatening, but they are more likely to grow and spread deeper into the skin compared to basal cell carcinoma. For this reason, SCC is considered an aggressive form of skin cancer.

Like BCC, squamous cell carcinoma develops after prolonged exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun or tanning bed/lamps. However, patients who are fair skinned, have a history of sunburn, a low immune system or past precancerous skin lesions are at greater risk for SCC.

SCC Symptoms

The warning signs of squamous cell carcinoma include a scaly, irritated area of skin, or an elevated growth (similar to a wart). A skin growth that changes or a skin wound that won’t heal should be evaluated and/or biopsied for SCC.

Treating Your Skin Cancer

The good news is that both basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma are highly treatable. We urge patients to participate in a yearly skin check so that skin cancers are caught and treated at their earliest stage. At Olansky Dermatology, we proudly offer some of the most advanced skin cancer treatments available, including a highly successful procedure known as Mohs Surgery. Call today to schedule your skin check!

Posted on behalf of Dr. Jodi E. Ganz, Olansky Dermatology Associates
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Olansky Dermatology Associates – Atlanta Dermatologist
3379 Peachtree Rd NE, Suite 500
Atlanta, GA 30326
Phone: (404) 355-5484
American College of Mohs Surgery Atlanta Association for Dermatology and Dermatologic Surgery The American Society for Dermatologic Surgery American Academy of Dermatology American Medical Association American Medical Association

Buckhead Office

3379 Peachtree Rd NE, Suite 500

Atlanta, GA 30326

Roswell Office

11755 Pointe Place, Suite B-2

Roswell, GA 30076

Our Happy Patients

Olansky Dermatology Associates

4.7/ 5.0

Based on 229 reviews

Jenny S.

The doctors and PA’s are great and very knowledgeable. I never have to wait to long and the office staff is always very nice. I also take my son there and they are great with him as well. I would highly recommend Olansky Dermatology.

Kristen R.

Olansky Dermatology is wonderful! Our whole family goes. My daughter has had terrible eczema through the years and both my kids had mollescum too. They always make things better and spend time explaining whats wrong and how to fix it.

Mike D.

I recently had a couple appointments at Olanksy Dermatology and was seen by Julia Lee. Julie was excellent and quickly took care of the issue I was having with my skin. I would highly recommend Olansky Dermatology and especially Julia Lee to anyone in need of a dermatologist.

Tamima D.

My husband is a patient of PA Sharon Doering I appreciate all she did for my spouse. She’s very down to earth & made him feel comfortable. Sharon communicated in a way that he can understand.
Thank You

Lisa H.

I see the physician assistant Sharon Doering and she has drastically improved my skin! I highly recommend this practice and their brilliant thourough doctors. I finally have glowing skin!

Betty G.

I have had excellent experience at Olansky Dermatology. Dr Burger is meticulous and thorough and has a most pleasant and calm manner. I have every confidence in her and this office.

Cheyenne G.

Very kind and understanding people. Dr. Bellamy and her nurse took the time to listen to all my concerns and never made me feel rushed.

Kishan P.

I was actually running a bit late, but they were very friendly and knowledgeable about what was going on with my skin. And also very timely.I will definitely stick with them!

Khol S.

Very professional and pleasant staff. When I arrived at my appointment this afternoon I was informed that my doctor called out sick and they tried calling to let me know but I just recently changed my number so they were unable to reach me. The receptionist was so sweet and helpful. Instead of leaving and making a new appointment they fit me in without an issue and without any waiting.

Susan H.

Dr. Ilyas was highly recommended to me so I decided to change dermatologists. I am so glad as I am pleased with his expertise and his highly professional manner. I am also delighted with Emily Raville, Aesthetician. She does a wonderful job and I am recommending her to my friends as well. I am completely satisfied – can’t get any better than that!

Lindsay S.

I have been going to Olansky Dematology for many years now, whether for a specific problem, or just for a really great deep facial, and I wouldn’t consider going anywhere else. Every single staff member is knowledgeable and professional. The customer service I receive every visit leaves a positive and lasting impression. I always feel comfortable and at ease while I am there. Great staff!

Janet R.

I seem to live at this place! Whether it’s for an appointment with a doctor or for an aesthetic treatment, I am there frequently. I cannot say enough good things. Efficient, friendly, the best doctors, and a new aesthetic center with the latest in procedures and products to keep us looking almost as young as we feel. It’s always fun to see Emily and she knows just what to recommend.