Actinic Keratosis

Actinic Keratosis

Actinic Keratosis Treatment in Santa Barbara, CA

Actinic keratosis lesions may progress to skin cancer. Dr. Keith Llewellyn offers treatment for actinic keratosis for men and women in Santa Barbara, Ventura, Solvang, Santa Maria, Santa Ynez, and the surrounding areas of California.

What are Actinic Keratosis?

Actinic keratosis are precancerous skin lesions that may give rise to squamous cell carcinoma and basal cell carcinoma.  Additionally, they are a sign that you may be at increased risk for developing all types of skin cancer.  Actinic keratosis are caused by a lifetime of exposure to damaging ultraviolet rays from sunlight, tanning beds, and other sources.  They are typically red, scaling, rough bumps and patches found on sun exposed skin.   Left untreated, actinic keratosis may develop into skin cancer.

How Much Does Treatment for Actinic Keratosis Cost?

Treatment for actinic keratosis varies, and your cost is determined by the treatment plan that is recommended by Dr. Llewellyn during the consultation. Cost can be discussed during your office visit. Cost will vary depending on what, if any, procedures are performed during your visit. If we are providers for your insurance, we can bill your insurance for treatments related to actinic keratosis. If you are self pay or we do not accept your insurance, we can provide you with a quote for an initial office visit cost over the phone prior to your appointment. This quote, however, does not include any procedures that may be advised and performed during your visit. See our financial policy for additional information. Aloe Dermatology accepts payment by cash or major credit cards, and you can learn more on our financing page.

What Are the Benefits of Treatment for Actinic Keratosis?

The primary benefit of treatment for actinic keratosis is to reduce the likelihood that these growths will evolve into skin cancer.  Most patients also note that their skin has a smoother texture and more even tone after removal of these precancerous lesions.  Additionally, during your appointment with Dr. Llewellyn, you can learn how to protect your skin from damaging ultraviolet rays.

Am I a Candidate for Actinic Keratosis Treatment?

Almost all patients who have actinic keratosis are candidates for treatment.  If you have lesions that you may think could be actinic keratosis, we recommend that you have them examined Dr. Llewellyn or our physician assistant.

What Should I Expect from Actinic Keratosis Treatment?

In the earliest stages, actinic keratosis are very difficult to discern visually.  Actinic keratosis often give your skin a rough, scaly texture. Dr. Llewellyn is able to detect both early and well developed actinic keratosis.

While treatment recommendations may vary, these lesions are usually frozen off with liquid nitrogen at the time of your visit. It takes only a few seconds to freeze a lesion. Afterwards, the treated area tends to turn red and swell up, similar to a bug bite. Sometimes, a blister may form. The area eventually turns dark, scabs, and peels off.  The healing process takes around seven days if performed on the face. Other areas of the body can take between 10-14 days to fully heal.  Dr. Llewellyn may also recommend Blu-U® blue light photodynamic therapy in many cases to treat actinic keratosis.  Lastly, Dr.  Llewellyn may prescribe prescription creams such as efudex or aldara to treat your actinic keratosis.

If you notice red,scaly areas on your skin or have rough bumps on the surface, you may have actinic keratosis,  precancerous lesions that may progress to skin cancer. Aloe Dermatology offers actinic keratosis treatment for men and women in Santa Barbara, Ventura, Solvang, Santa Maria, Santa Ynez, and the surrounding areas of California. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.