Can you get skin cancer on a finger? Yes, you can. Your hands and fingers see a lot more sunlight exposure than you may think, making them susceptible to skin cancer. What does skin cancer on the hand look like? Depending on the type of skin cancer, there are several early warning signs to be aware of. Learn more about skin cancer on the hand or fingers with this overview.
Skin Cancer on Hand or Finger
There are three different types of skin cancer — basal cell skin cancer, squamous cell skin cancer, and melanoma — each of which can develop anywhere on the body. Basal cell and squamous cell are classified as non-melanoma skin cancers, which are more treatable and see an overall higher survival rate than melanoma, a cancer that’s known to spread.
Skin cancer on fingers and hands is common because unlike other parts of the body that enjoy protection from clothing for most of the year, fingers and hands are often left exposed, soaking in sunlight and ultraviolet rays on a daily basis. Too much time in the sun can cause serious damage to your skin cells, especially over years or decades of exposure, making skin cancer on the palm of your hand a real risk.
What Does Skin Cancer on a Finger Look Like?
How do you know if you have skin cancer on your finger? You or your dermatologist will notice visual signs. Since there are several different types of skin cancer on hands and fingers, you may experience a variety of symptoms.
For basal cell skin cancer, look for:
- A translucent, pearly or waxy bump
- Sunken center
- A sore that refuses to heal
- Irregular blood vessels on the surface
- Bleeds easily after injury
For squamous cell skin cancer, watch for:
- Small, firm nodules
- Raised skin lesion that’s red in appearance
- Scaly areas that crack or bleed
- Crusted scale on the surface
- Large, mushroom-like growths
For melanoma, be aware of:
- A mole or birthmark that changes in size, color, or shape, especially those with irregular borders
People with fair complexions are at the biggest risk of developing skin cancer on the fingers or hand. If caught early, basal cell and squamous cell skin cancers, and even melanoma, don’t typically spread. Early detection is the best defense in beating skin cancer, so scheduling annual skin cancer screenings with your dermatologist is a smart way to stay on top of your skin’s health.
What Does Skin Cancer Under a Nail Look Like?
Melanoma is the type of skin cancer that most commonly affects the nail bed, although it’s not as common as basal cell or squamous cell skin cancers overall. Skin cancer under the nails typically falls into one of three categories: arcal lentiginous melanoma, nodular melanoma, or desmoplastic melanoma. The following visual symptoms can indicate melanoma under the nail bed:
- A black or brown band in the nail
- Dark skin next to or around your nail
- Nail lifting from your finger
- Nail split down the middle
- A bump or nodule under your nail
Learn About GentleCure™ as Treatment for Skin Cancer on Fingers
Patients experiencing skin cancer on the hand or fingers have treatment options. If you’re looking for a surgery-free non-melanoma skin cancer treatment, GentleCure offers results without cutting or scarring. Contact us online or call us to learn more about how GentleCure works. Talk to your dermatologist about whether it’s a suitable option for your symptoms.