Sun damage and Actinic keratosis

Sun damage and Actinic keratosis. DERMATOLOGY CENTRE Dr. Cathy Dierckxsens Brussels is specialised in cosmetic procedures and lasers treatments for face and body. For medical dermatology the practice is specialised in medical laser treatments, mole- and skin cancer screening and in surgical dermatology. www.dermatocentre.be Dermatology Centre info@dermatocentre.be Avenue des Nerviens 41, 1040 Bruxelles, Belgium +32 (0) 2 735 94 42

UV damage: Excessive sun exposure can cause premature ageing, including changes to colour, texture and hydration.

Pigmented lesions (Lentigo solaris or -senilis), develop gradually through exposure to sunlight over the years. The older we get, the more spots appear on the most sun-exposed parts of the body, like the face, décolleté and the back of the hands. Lighter skin types are more prone.

Prevention by careful UV protection is the best way to avoid age spots and UV damage. The damage in the skin

by UV rays accumulates and augments in the years after exposure. UV damage is therefore the result

of an accumulation over the years.

It can also cause more serious changes to the skin’s immune functions that can lead to actinic keratosis

(precancerous lesions) and skin cancer.

Actinic keratosis are very common and are considered precancerous. They appear mainly on sites repeatedly

exposed to sun especially the face (nose, cheeks, forehead) and the backs of the hands in fair-skinned people. They appear as yellow-grey thickened crusts, are quite adherent to the skin and grow back when they are scratched off.

Treatments may include cryotherapy or topical creams but recurrence is frequent. Currently the most

effective treatment is PhotoDynamic Therapy (PDT). If not treated they are at

risk of developing into a skin cancer named a squamous cell carcinoma.

Possible treatments