Squamous Cell Carcinoma (SCC) Facts SCC accounts for about 30% of non-Melanoma skin cancers. SCC usually appears on areas of the skin that are most often exposed to the sun, such as the head, neck, hands, forearms or lower legs SCCs often appears as a thickened, red, scaly lump. SCC may look like a sore that hasn’t healed SCCs tend to grow quickly over several weeks or months. It is possible for SCCs to spread to other parts of the body – SCC on the lips, ears, scalp or temples has a high risk of spreading and should be seen by a doctor immediately. Basal Cell Carcinoma (BCC) Facts BCC makes up about 70% of non-Melanoma skin cancers. BCC commonly develops on the head, neck and upper body It may appear as a pearly lump or a scaly or dry area that is pale or pink in colour. BCC may bleed and become inflamed, and dead tissue may slough off (ulcerate). Some BCCs heal then break down again BCCs tend to grow slowly and don’t usually spread to other parts of the body. However, if BCC is left untreated or grows larger than 5 cm, it may grow deeper into the skin and damage nearby tissue. How do I know if I have Skin Cancer? Did You Know? Skin cancers don’t all look the same but there are some signs to look out for. These signs include a spot that is different from other spots on the skin, a spot, mole or freckle that has changed in size, shape or colour, a sore that bleeds or doesn’t heal or a new mole or freckle. • If your job requires you to work outside, tax deductions are available for sun protection products. Talk to your tax advisor or contact the Tax Office on 13 28 61 or visit www.ato.gov.au • UV radiation cannot be seen or felt. It can damage your skin without you knowing • There is no such thing as windburn. The wind may dry the skin but cannot burn it. What is described as windburn is actually sunburn • Heat or high temperatures are not related to levels of UV radiation. Temperature relates to the amount of infrared present in sunlight, not UV radiation • Protect your skin when the UV Index is at 3 and above. The Bureau of Meteorology issues the SunSmart UV Alert whenever the UV Index is forecast to reach 3 and above. The higher the number, the stronger the levels of UV radiation and the less time it takes for skin damage to occur. Extra care should be taken between 10am and 3pm when UV levels reach their peak. Get to know your skin. Regular examinations of your skin will help you notice changes and learn what is normal for you. Don’t forget to look at all areas of your skin such as the soles of your feet and on your scalp. See your General Practitioner (GP) straight away if you see anything new or different on your skin. Finding and treating Skin Cancers early needs less invasive treatment and provides a better outcome for you. Early detection and treatment of Melanoma can save your life. Protecting Outdoor Workers Exposure to UV radiation has been recognised as an Occupational Health and Safety hazard and employees who work outside must be protected from its harmful effects. Workplaces that employ outdoor workers have a responsibility to develop and implement a sun protection policy and provide ongoing training to support it. The key components of a sun protection policy include providing and maintaining appropriate clothing and equipment to protect outdoor workers from the sun, the setting up of systems of work to reduce the amount of time workers spend in the sun and providing information, training and supervision in consultation with employees regarding prevention and early detection of skin cancer. Thanks to Melissa Fagan of Melanoma Institute Australia for her assistance with this article. Melanoma Institute Australia is a not-for-profit organisation that relies on the generosity of individuals, organisations and government funding to continue its ground breaking work into this potentially devastating cancer. Melanoma Facts Melanoma is the most serious form of skin cancer. It makes up only 5% of all skin cancers but is responsible for 90% of skin cancer deaths. Melanoma is the skin cancer that can kill you Normal, healthy freckles or moles usually have a smooth edge and an even colour. Melanoma often has an irregular edge or surface, and it may be blotchy and brown, black, blue, red, white or light grey. For men, the most common site for Melanoma is on the back Left untreated, a Melanoma may spread deeper into the skin where cancer cells can escape and be carried in lymph vessels or blood vessels to other parts of the body.