EAR, NOSE & THROAT
The skin is the largest organ in the body. Like other organs, the skin is susceptible to tumors as well. Skin tumors are abnormal growths on the skin. Skin tumors can be either malignant (cancerous) or benign (non-cancerous). There are different types of benign and malignant skin tumors. There is not one specific cause of skin tumors, but genetics has been discovered to play a part. Some benign tumors are unavoidable, but there are a few factors that can prevent malignant tumors.
Benign Skin Tumors
You could have a benign skin tumor and not even know it. There are three types of benign skin tumors. One type of benign tumor is what we call a wart. Warts are tumors that result from a virus called the Human Papilloma Virus. Warts are fleshy bumps most often found on the hands and feet. There are several different types of warts. Warts tend to disappear on their own, but they can also be removed. Warts have a tendency to return. If you have a wart, you may be able to cure with over the counter drugs such as freezing kits and salicylic acid preparations.
The next type of benign tumor is called Seborrheic keratoses. It sounds like a really serious disease, but it is a painless growth characterized by discoloration. Seborrheic keratoses show black, brown, or tan. They are typically found on the face, back, shoulders, or chest. They have a waxy and scaly appearance. Seborrheic keratoses may show up as one growth or multiple growths together. These tumors look cancerous but are not. They also do not require any treatment. Removal of the tumors is done if they become irritated or just for cosmetic reasons.
The last benign tumor is one that you will find on just about everybody. These tumors are called Nevi. Nevi are growths like moles and birthmarks. They too are completely harmless. Birthmarks are found at birth, and they can be anywhere on the body. Moles usually develop during adulthood. Moles can grow on any part of the body. They may be removed for cosmetic purposes but in most cases does not require treatment. Those with multiple nevi are at a higher risk of skin cancer. Moles can grow as a result of sun exposure and should be monitored. If you notice changes in your moles, be sure to see a dermatologist.
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