It is very important to get familiar with your skin by performing self-examinations on a routine basis. Monthly if you feel that you may be at risk, i.e.. fair skinned, lots of sunlight exposure. By detecting changes in your moles early on, or finding new areas or spots, you can greatly increase the odds of a good outcome if you should develop a skin cancer such as basal cell.
Being able to tell the doctor exactly when something first appeared and all the changes between then and now is a great aid in getting a proper diagnosis.
Not all changes in your skin will be a skin cancer, but you should see your doctor if you notice changes. If you really feel that you are at a high vulnerability, have had it before, runs in the family or extreme exposure, do what I do. Go and see the skin cancer specialist every six months.
a red patch or irritated area
a smooth, shiny and waxy looking bump
a smooth reddish brown growth
an open sore that won't heal, sometimes bleeds or oozes
If the doctor see's something he doesn't like, he will probably remove a specimen for biopsy, either by scraping off a small part or using a punch to remove a small core sample. When the results are returned, if it is a skin cancer, the doctor will explain the treatment options.Next - Basal cell treatment and prevention
"Skin cancer may appear as a small, smooth, shiny, pale, waxy lump."