A solar keratosis is a skin condition that is evidenced by rough or crusty, scaly bumps or patches on the surface of your skin. They usually show up on the parts of your skin that are most often exposed to the sun. These are places like your neck, forearms, the back of your hands, face, scalp, ears and lips.
A solar keratosis may range in size from being as tiny as a pinhead to over an inch in diameter. A solar keratosis can be red, pink, tan or a combination of these colors, or it can be the same color as your skin. A solar keratosis may be light or dark with its scale or crust being rough, dry and horn-like. A solar keratosis may be flat or raised in its appearance.
A solar keratosis is known by other names. A solar keratosis is also called actinic keratosis, precancerous spots or sun spots. Dermatologists use the term “AK” for a solar keratosis.
A solar keratosis usually results from prolonged exposure to the sun. It may take years or even decades for a solar keratosis to develop.
A lot of people who are diagnosed with a solar keratosis say, “I don’t ever go out in the sun.” The answer for this is that the sun exposure took place many years ago. However, short periods of exposure to the sun do not usually lead to the development of a solar keratosis.
There are some risk factors that may increase your likelihood of having a solar keratosis. Some of these include:
- Having blonde or red hair that is coupled with blue, green or hazel eyes
- A weak immune system that is caused by AIDS, chemotherapy, chronic leukemia or organ transplant medications
- A history of frequent or intense sunburn or exposure to the sun
- Having pale, fair skin
- A tendency to freckle or burn when you are exposed to the sun.
A solar keratosis is a condition that grows slowly. Most of the time, a solar keratosis does not cause any signs or symptoms other than there appearance on your skin. In fact, a solar keratosis is often recognized by touch rather than by sight.
A solar keratosis can itch or cause a pricking or tender sensation. This may be especially true after you have been out in the sun for a period of time.
A solar keratosis may go away only to come back at a later time. About half of the time a solar keratosis will go away on its own. This is true if you avoid all sun exposure for a few years.
You may have one or several solar keratosis that develop at the same time. In time, a solar keratosis may develop a hard, wart-like surface.
The diagnosis of a solar keratosis is usually made on the basis of your doctor’s physical examination of your skin. Your doctor will make this diagnosis by touching and seeing your skin.
While a solar keratosis may seem like something that is quite harmless, many doctors think that it is precancerous. A solar keratosis may turn into a serious type of skin cancer that is known as squamous cell carcinoma. Because of this, your doctor may want you to have a skin biopsy to see if your solar keratosis has turned into cancer.
You may have a solar keratosis that has turned into squamous cell carcinoma or other incapacitating disorders in addition to this condition that have given rise to your disability and inability to work.
Have you made a request for Social Security disability benefits or disability benefits from the Social Security Administration? Has your request been denied? Get a free case evaluation now.
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