Newport Beach CA dermatologist uses lasers to treat skin cancers comfortably and safely
Laser therapy offers a powerful, safe, and versatile way for Dr. Arta Farshidi to help “discover your skin, discover a new you.” Lasers also provide a way to treat pre-cancers and some of the most common types of skin cancers.
Types of treatment
Generally, there are 5 different standard ways to treat skin cancers:
- Radiation Therapy
- Biologic Therapy
- Photodynamic Therapy (PDT)
Laser or light based treatments fall within two of those categories: surgery and PDT.
Basics on laser surgery
The laser produces a narrow, intense beam of light. When directed precisely to a lesion on the surface of the skin, such as a tumor, the laser light behaves like a knife. It makes “bloodless cuts” through the affected tissues.
Lasers are more precise than conventional surgical tools such as scalpels. Accordingly, they do less damage to surrounding tissues. Less trauma during treatment typically means less demands on the body for healing and downtime afterward.
Basics on PDT
Treatment with photodynamic therapy starts with the application of a photosensitizing drug. This drug is either injected into the bloodstream or applied topically to the skin as a cream. As the drug is absorbed by the body, its cells become sensitive to light. Thanks to this heightened sensitivity, when laser light or another type of light is applied to the area to be treated, the cancer cells are destroyed.
PDT may be an attractive option, in part, because it leaves surrounding areas outside of the treatment zone untouched.
A few notes on light-based treatments
In general, the National Cancer Institute reports laser surgery and PDT are attractive options for pre-cancers such as actinic keratosis. AKs often appear as pink or red, scaly patches and can become squamous cell carcinomas if allowed to progress without treatment.
Light-based options are also suitable for some basal cell carcinomas, which is the most common type of skin cancer. The squamous cells are those thin, flat cells on the top layer of the epidermis, whereas basal cells reside underneath and are rounded.
Both types rarely spread to other parts of the body, whereas melanoma is notorious for spreading to other tissues and organs.
In addition to skin lasers in Newport Beach CA, Dr. Farshidi may suggest Mohs Micrographic Surgery. Even some melanomas can benefit from this famously precise approach to cutting out cancer cells, layer by layer.
Skin cancer treatment actually starts with prevention and regular, ongoing professional skin checks. Don’t hesitate to schedule an appointment today by calling (949) 531-7111. Skin cancers are highly curable, especially if caught and treated early.
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