The top layer of the skin, known as the epidermis, has three common types of skin cell, all of which can develop into cancerous lesions or tumours. These are...
Squamous cells are the flat shaped cells on the outer layer of the skin. Squamous Cell Carcinoma is the type of cancer that affects these cells and it can be fast growing and aggressive.
These cells are beneath the outer layer of squamous cells and continually divide to form new squamous cells to replace dead skin cells on the surface of the skin. Basal Cell Carcinoma can form in these cells and this is the commonest form of skin cancer.
Melanocytes are cells whose main role is to protect the skin from the sun via the melanin pigment they produce. When the skin is exposed to sun melanocytes become more active, making the skin tan. Cancer of the melanocytes is called melanoma and is the fourth most common cancer in Australia (after prostate, breast and bowel cancers) with around 13,000 Australians diagnosed with melanoma every year.
Read more about skin cancers and treatments here...