Why You Need Sunscreen And Sunblock-Somewhat Graphic

Previously I wrote a post about the importance of using sunscreen, after I went to the Dermatologist and found that I had a small area of skin on my back that my Doctor suspected was cancerous. After removing a small sample for biopsy, she found that it was, indeed, cancerous. Luckily of me, it was basal cell carcinoma, the non-threatening form of skin cancer. Yesterday, I went back in to have the “small” patch of skin removed. Imagine my surprise when I saw the offending piece on the equipment tray as I was dressing. Instead of the small piece I was expecting (maybe 1 cm. or less) what I saw was nearly 3/4″ of and inch long, about 1/2″ wide and about 1/8″ thick. Here’s a picture of the wound site: I’m off training for several days so I don’t pull the stitches out. As a follow-up to my previous post, here’s some info from About.com about basal cell carcinoma:

What Causes Basal Cell Carcinoma?

By Lisa Fayed, About.com Updated: August 4, 2006 About.com Health’s Disease and Condition content is reviewed by our Medical Review Board

Basal cell carcinoma is the most commonly diagnosed type of skin cancer1. It is estimated that 75% of non-melanoma skin cancer cases are basal cell carcinomas. So, what exactly causes it?UV RaysUltraviolet rays from the sun and from tanning beds are the primary risk factors for developing BCC. It is important to stay out of the sun during its peak times (10 a.m.-2 p.m.), as this is when the sun’s rays are at their hottest. When outdoors, wear sunscreen, even when it is shady!Skin Tone Fair skinned people have a higher risk factor for developing basal cell carcinoma. Keep in mind that when exposed to UV rays, all skin tones are at risk! Basal Cell Nevus Syndrome This syndrome is a genetic disorder that causes tumors to develop at early ages. People with syndromes like basal cell nevus syndrome, are more sensitive to UV rays. Other Factors Other risk factors for development include radiation therapy treatment and immune suppression therapy. The bottom line is that the best defense for the average, healthy person against BCC is the use of sun screen! Br sun smart- an ounce of prevention is really worth a pound of cure when it comes to skin cancer!

So not only do I have a large chunk of skin missing out of my back, but I’m also precluded from training for some time while my skin heals. Remember, fitness isn’t just about muscles and endurance or fat loss, it’s about the entire body, top to bottom, inside and out. So please take care of your skin and stay healthy.

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