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Pre-cancerous Sun Spots

Solar Keratoses (‘SunSpots’)

Solar keratosis are also known as sunspots or actinic keratosis.

Sunspots are a pre-cancerous lesion, if not treated some will develop into a Squamous cell carcinoma.

Sunspots (or solar keratosis or actinic keratosis) are rough, scaly spots or patches on skin that has been previously exposed to the sun. They can be reddish brown or skin-coloured, often with white a scale or crust. They may be sensitive with a stinging sensation.

If a solar keratosis becomes tender ,thickened or lumpy get it checked; it may have become a squamous cell cancer.

A person may have a single sunspot, but over time, more usually develop.

Solar Kerotoses - Sunspot - Actinic-Kerotoses - Drummoyne Dermatology
Solar Kerotoses – Sunspot – Actinic-Kerotoses

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Treatment options for Solar keratosis

Cryotherapy

Liquid nitrogen is used to freeze and kill the precancerous cells.

The treatment stings at the time, then becomes raised and pink and occasionally blisters.

A scab develops after a few days.

The treated area heals in 7-10 days on the face, 14 days on the arms and 2-4 weeks on the legs.

The area normally heals well, however, there is a small risk of leaving a permanent white mark.

Efudix cream (5 Fluorouracil)

Efudix cream is usually applied twice a day for 3 weeks for facial sun spots.
The cream can be applied to individual sun spots or to large facial areas.

When treating a large areas on the face, Efudix treats not only visible sun spots ,but also microscopic ones which are not yet visible.

Efudix has approximately an 80% cure rate.

Cost is approximately $60 from your chemist. A prescription is required.

During treatment the area will become red, crusted and sometimes uncomfortable.

The final cosmetic result is excellent

See link to our Efudix treatment fact sheet

Aldara cream (Imiquimod)

Aldara cream is applied 3 times a week for 16 weeks for solar keratosis.

There is less inflammation compared with efudix, however, the treatment period is longer,16 weeks compared to 3 weeks.

Aldara has a clearance rate of approximately 40-50% for solar keratosis.

Cost is approximately $120 from your chemist. A prescription is required.

Solaraze Gel (Diclofenac gel)

Solaraze contains a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug.

It is applied twice daily to affected areas on the face for about 12 weeks.

There is usually mild inflammation during the treatment, less than Efudix and Aldara.

Solaraze has a clearance rate of approximately 40-50% for solar keratosis.

Cost is approximately $60 from your chemist. A prescription is required.

Photodynamic Therapy (PDT)

Photodynamic Therapy is a treatment option for solar keratosis.

PDT has a cure rate of approximately 50-80% for solar keratosis.

Cream is applied to the lesion to be treated for approximately 3hours.

The cream is then activated by exposure to a specific wavelength of light for 10-20minutes.

Often the treatment is repeated 2-4 weeks later.

The advantage of PDT, compared to Aldara and Efudix, is that the red crusted stage is of shorter duration, one to three weeks, rather than three to six weeks.

The cost of PDT is $600 (compared to $50 for Efudix)

The treatment may be painful.

Read more on PDT under our facilities

Find out more on PDT here

Our Services

Our Services

Our expertise is in the early detection and treatment of skin cancer. On an average day any one of ... Read more
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What is a Dermatologist?

Dermatologists are qualified Medical Specialists who are experts in the diagnosis, treatment ... Read more
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Why see a Dermatologist

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Drummoyne Dermatology is a long established and well regarded dynamic dermatology centre which has provided state-of-the-art dermatology care in Sydney for over a decade. Our expertise is in the early detection and treatment of skin cancer and in the accurate diagnosis and optimal management of other diseases of the skin.
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