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Eyelid skin cancer

How do I know if I have skin cancer?

Any new growth, mole, or defined area of skin which does not look like surrounding skin should be checked by your doctor.  On the eyelids, benign growths can occur, but any sudden new growth or expansion of existing growth should be checked by an ophthalmologist or eye MD.  Sometimes cancer on the eyelids can be subtle as well.  Any bleeding, change in thickness or eyelid skin texture is suspicious.  A chalazion or stye that returns many times in the same place is also suspicious for cancer.  Also, loss of eyelashes can indcate cancer of the eyelids.

Most common Signs of eyelid cancer

1. new growth
2. new pigmented growth
3. shiny or pearly appearance of skin spot
4. Loss of eyelashes
5. Change in shape of eyelid
6. bleeding lesion
7. Recurrent stye or chalazion

Types of Eyelid Skin Cancer

Most eyelid cancer is called basal cell cancer or squamous cell cancer.  It is usually from repeated exposure to sun.  A darker spot may become melanoma over time, and should also be watched closely.  Basal and squamous cell cancer is slow growing, but can invade the eye or the nerves to the eye, causing pain.  Melanoma is life threatening if it spreads to the lymph nodes.

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