Actinic Keratosis Treatment & Clinical Trials in South Florida
What is actinic keratosis (AK)?
Actinic keratosis, also known as AK, is a flaky spot or patch that appears on your skin, usually as a result of exposure to UV rays. There may be just one bump or there may be multiple bumps. Multiple bumps are referred to as keratoses.
The bumps may appear in various places throughout the body, including on the:
- Back of your neck
Keratoses can range in size, but they are usually no larger than an inch. The skin patches take many years to develop and typically first present themselves in people who are around 40 years of age.
What causes actinic keratosis?
Actinic keratosis is usually the result of many years of exposure to UV rays. Your skin can be exposed to UV rays through the sun or tanning beds. You may be more susceptible to developing actinic keratosis if you:
- Are over the age of 40
- Frequently expose your skin to the sun
- Have a history of sunburn or freckling after sun exposure
- Live in a region that has sunny weather
- Have light-colored hair or eyes
- Have a medical history of skin cancer or actinic keratosis
- Have a weakened immune system due to certain conditions or treatments
What are the symptoms of actinic keratosis?
Actinic keratosis may be precancerous, meaning the condition may lead to cancer. For this reason, knowing the symptoms of actinic keratosis can help you determine when to see a doctor. Symptoms of actinic keratosis can range from mild to severe and may include:
- Rough, flaky spot or spots on your skin, usually no bigger than an inch
- Slightly protruding bump or bumps on your skin
- Firm, wart-like bump or bumps on the skin
- Itchiness or a burning sensation in the affected area of skin
Actinic keratosis can occur in various areas throughout the body and the keratoses can vary in color. While most keratoses turn red, they can also appear to be tan, white, pink, or the same color as your skin.
How is actinic keratosis diagnosed?
Actinic keratosis is diagnosed by your doctor following a thorough physical examination of the affected skin. Your doctor may also recommend additional testing, such as a biopsy, for further diagnosis. Determining whether the actinic keratosis is precancerous can sometimes be challenging, therefore your doctor may recommend treatment to remove the growths as a preventative measure.
What actinic keratosis treatment options are available?
Actinic keratosis will sometimes disappear without the aid of treatment. However, actinic keratosis usually returns upon re-exposure to the sun. If actinic keratosis returns, your doctor may recommend:
- Certain topical medications
- Photodynamic therapy
Since actinic keratosis may be precancerous, your doctor may recommend removal of the growths. Methods for removal of the keratoses may include:
- Curettage (scraping)
Your doctor can help determine which of the above treatment options may be best for your actinic keratosis. In addition, actinic keratosis clinical trials may be another treatment option to consider if other therapies fail to produce successful results.
If you have been unsuccessful in finding the right treatment option for actinic keratosis, are seeking affordable actinic keratosis treatment options, or are looking for paid compensation, sign up for a future clinical trial today. With over 25 years of experience in the execution of dermatological clinical trials — under the guidance of double board-certified dermatologist and Skin Care Research founder, Dr. Marta I. Rendon — our team is highly trained and committed to ensuring that all clinical guidelines are met and that the rights of every patient are always protected. Call 561-948-3116 or fill out the form on this page to learn more about our clinical trial options.