Actinic keratoses are precancerous lesions that appear as subtle, rough spots found on sun-exposed skin. They commonly occur in fair-complected people fifty and over. Today, we are seeing many patients in their 30s with these precancerous lesions. If left untreated, up to 10% may become squamous cell skin cancers. Actinic keratoses are one of the most common conditions that dermatologists treat, using liquid nitrogen to spot-treat specific lesions. A more global approach is to treat the entire face or scalp by topically applying topical 5-fluorouracil (Carac®) or imiquimod (Aldara® or Zyclara), or with Blue U Light and topically applied Levulan® (photodynamic therapy).
Jeffrey H. Binstock, MD is a Fellow of: