May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month- Stages of Skin Cancer

Welcome to the 30 days of senseable sun protection. Every day in May we shall be posting information to help you make more informed choices about enjoying hte great outdoors-safely

It seems to me that most people don’t really know very much about skin cancer. There are those who definitely fear it and may even overreact in protecting themselves.

But there are a large number of people who see some changes in their skin and just figure it will go away, in time. So they ignore it and in time it may just go away.

But the next time a change occurs on their skin, it may not go away. Still yet they may just live with it until it starts to become a matter of big concern.

And even then they may need some pushing from their spouse or a true friend to go have it checked out by a dermatologist and/or a qualified doctor of alternative medicine. You may even want to work with both.

Some skin cancers are slow growing and some can start to grow and spread quickly, even internally without you ever noticing a thing. All you ever notice is that small bump, crusty or discolored spot or lesions on the surface of your skin, not knowing what skin cancer stage it could be.

So in an effort to make you react right away when you see ANY little changes occur on your skin, I want to make it clear what the stages of skin cancer are.

Non-Melanoma Stages

• Stage 0: This is when cells are starting to form abnormally. They are precancerous, but have the potential to become cancerous. This is the very best time to react, when you see something Abnormal.
• Stage I: The abnormal cells have now become cancerous and the diameter of the lesion is less than 2 cm. (about the diameter of a pencil eraser). At this point it has not spread beyond the surface of the skin.
• Stage II: Now the cancerous area is greater than 2 cm. (about the size of a marble +). It still has not spread beyond the surface of the skin.
• Stage III: It has spread to other adjoining areas and you may not even be able to notice it. The regional lymph nodes now could be involved.
• Stage IV: The cancer has spread to other distant areas of the body and it could be involving internal organs.

Melanoma Stages

• Stage 0: Abnormal discolored cell will start to show up. It could be as simple as a dark colored mole.
• Stage I: Cancerous cells are now present. At this point they are less than 2 mm. thick. This is about the thickness of a quarter.
• Stage II: The cancerous spot is now between 2 and 4 millimeters in thickness (between 1 and 2 quarters placed together). They are still only confined to the skin.
• Stage III: The melanoma skin cancer has spread beyond the skin and now involves the lymph nodes.
• Stage IV: It has now gone even beyond the lymph nodes and reached such vital organs as the liver, lungs and brain.

So as you can see skin cancer is something everyone needs to be aware of and it’s something you should take seriously. The skin cancer warning signs are there to tell you something.

Don’t be afraid!…Just be aware!…and then react!

 I am a 20 year survivor of stage III squamous cell carcinoma skin cancer. So, much of what I say comes from my own experiences. If you want to learn more about skin cancer visit here

50+UPF Sunny Sleevez

About sunnysleevez

I'm a freckly red head, originally from London now living in LA with 2 pale children. Frankly with our coloring we have no business being such an outdoorsy family and living in southern California. I grew up in a time when factor 8 sun milk was considered the best protection available to combat the hot rays of a holiday in southern Spain, that lead to 3rd degree burns and the rest of the vacation spent in the shade of our apartment. As a family we love to be outside, going to the beach, camping, swimming & hiking. We can't completely avoid the sun (nor should we) but taking sensible measures to avoid unnecessary UV damage is a priority. How do we do that? By staying in the shade in the middle of the day, wearing sun protective clothing (that's why I created Sunny Sleevez), a broad brimmed hat, UV rated sunglasses, using chemical-free broad spectrum sun screen on exposed areas & eating a healthy diet with as few chemicals as possible & lots of antioxidants.
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34 Responses to May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month- Stages of Skin Cancer

  1. Good information for those who work outdoors for a living as I do. Found it through your like to my husband’s blog, My husband read your blog and insisted that I look at it. Being a life long sailor, I have been well exposed to the sun, though have used sunblock all my life. I am blessed with a with a more olive, sun tolerant pigment, but I am trying to transition to a more sun-free line of work online. Check out our two recently published websites and

  2. bigron42 says:

    My wife, who is a nurse, worked with a dermatologist for over seven years. She saw a lot of skin cancers. She’s always telling people to wear sunblocker or other protection when going out in the sun. I have had a few basals removed since we’ve been living in Florida. I still have a few more to get removed. An aunt of ours went through a facial efudex treatment a while back to burn off a lot of cancers all at once. She said it hurt, and it scarred her face pretty badly. My wife’s uncle died of melanoma. He was a golfer who spent a lot of time in the sun without any protection. Melanona is a real killer, but most people today just laugh it off.

  3. Thanks for this good advice. We in Texas get a lot of sun exposure!

  4. joemacgown says:

    Great post! We go thru tubes of spf 50 down here in Mississippi…

  5. You have some great, potentially life-saving information here. Very good of you to post and help others. Thank you also for following my blog! I am now following you as well.

  6. Pingback: Sailing and Skin Cancer « The View Up Here

  7. Thank you again! We are taking the family to Hawaii, and shall be very careful!

  8. kymlucas says:

    Good post. I’m also sort of fair-skinned and always worried about any new moles that show up. Thank you for reminding us all to keep a close watch on our skin.

  9. sjappleby says:

    Hi Sunnysleevz! Thank you for reading my blog “Living Up to Mom.” I love what you are doing here since I am a freckled strawberry blonde who was born and raised in southern CA. I’ve had plenty of basal cell carcinomas and have the scars to prove it! I want to tell you about one of my new discoveries: astaxanthin. A very powerful antioxidant that is supposed to act as a natural sunscreen to help prevent sun damage, as well as a a long list of other benefits. I have been taking this for about a 6 weeks. I took 4 mg 3 times a day for a month to saturate my system, and now just take it once a day. I take extra when I am out in the sun. My daughter’s engagement party was at the beach, and I took extra that day and also gave some to my son (of course we used sunscreen, and stayed in the shade, too). My hubby and daughter didn’t take it and despite the sunscreen and shade both ended up badly burned. My son was fine. I ended up sunburned in one place I missed with the sunscreen, but healed without peeling in 3 days. My hubby and daughter were still burned a week later. Of course, you’ll want to do your own research. Just wanted to pass this on!

  10. Norma Chang says:

    Thanks for th advice and reminder to pay attention to any changes to our skin.

  11. Hya Sunnysleevez, that’s a great post well done. As someone who has just had 2 bcc s removed from my nose, both of which when I pointed them out to doctors was told they were nothing, and now have a 5 inch scar around my nose, I do wish people were more aware of what it can do to you. And… I haven’t really been in the sun in 20 years since I first became aware of the damage it could do, but like you say, we come from an era of factor 5 being too high because it would stop you tanning way of thinking! Hopefully those days are behind us as more and more people are realising that if nothing else factor 40 means you might be able to stay in the sun a lbit longer rather than think it will stop you tanning. One day we might be able to get away from the notion that tanning is ‘healthy’ and start seeing it for what it really is!.

  12. good information….yuchhhh….but good

  13. acflory says:

    We live in skin cancer capital – Australia – and it’s great to see such an informative blog post!

  14. Thank you taking the time to Follow my blog.
    I have just lost a very goof friend in Australia with skin cancer. Your information is excellent.
    All the best.

  15. Sharon says:

    Awareness is such a vital tool in the war against cancer. Thanks for doing your part!

  16. I don’t go in the sun that often but thanks for the info

  17. Red says:

    Thank you for visiting and following my blog. I’m a freckled redhead, too. I was always getting sunburned and then blisters as a kid growing up in South Texas. I’ve already had a couple of spots burned off, and your article reminds me that I need to get myself to the doctor to have a couple more checked out.

  18. nancyola says:

    Thank you for following itsmindbloggleing. I checked out your description of skin cancers versus non-cancerous spots and I want to thank you. I just went to the doctor last week to check out a spot on my arm. Thank goodness it was not cancerous.

  19. Thank you for your visit and like. You have some very valuable information posted. If you will allow me, I would like to speak in favor of our sun. I have Practiced Medicine in the pass, so I am not speaking from a topic, I am not familiar with. Any way, it just seems odd that we smear Zinc Oxide and other chemicals including Alcohol called sunscreen onto our skin, because we believe it’s the right thing to do. Then go outside and burn these chemicals into our skin. Yes, I agree skin cancer is on the rise. At first glance one would blame it on the suns UV rays. Alcohol drys the skin by removing natural oils that prevent sun burning. These applied chemicals are now absorb into the dry layers of the skin. Funny, We never correlate the rise in skin cancer stats, to the chemicals we have just applied and then burned in. Yes, “they” say these chemicals are safe, but if you want to know the truth. Ask the folks who have been burned by a spontaneous combustion fire after applying Sunscreen. Research some of the chemicals that are in sunscreen here,s a few: Homosalate, Octinoxate, Octisalate, and Oxybenzone, just to name the ones on the can I just read. These are just the active ingredients. If you only have time to look up just one of these ingredients. Please research Oxybenzone, this one alone has been shown through studies to release free radicals when Illuminated. Which cause Cancer. Hummmmm, They put a chemical in sunscreen that when illuminated by the suns UV rays causes cancer, then they turn around and blame the sun because it has UV rays.

    This to me defies logic and even common sense. Really, It’s just plain madness.

    One last point in favor of the sun. Natural Vitamin D made in your body with help of the sun. There are thousands of studies demonstrating the benefits of this secosteroid synthesized by the body from cholesterol and sun exposure. It’s a fact that Synthetic Vitamin D found in milk and most processed foods is derived from irradiated oil a petroleum extracts from coal tar derivatives and irradiated cattle brains. Possibly containing formaldhyde and ammonia. Two carcinogens in themselves. Here’s the link: http://www.naturalnews.com036650_synthetic_vitamins_disease_side_effects.html
    Plus, it appears that this form is toxic to the human body. Got Milk?
    Believe it or not the sun is your friend, people with sensitive skin or light skinned not wanting to burn, might start out with small controlled doses of UV rays, allowing the skin to pigment first. Thus allowing more exposure. Never all at once as we have the tendency to do. A little common sense goes along way. Also, the sun produces Melatonin in the pineal gland which helps regulate our circadian rhythms which in-turn helps control our sleep/awake cycles. This reply was simply to inform your readers to a new construct of truth, which maybe investigated through their own research and investigation. It is not an attempt to diagnosis or treat any medical conditions, and is simply a matter of opinion. Please remember, They call it a Medical practice for a reason, and I no longer practice.
    Thank you again for stopping our DoowansNews&Events Blog we hope you enjoyed it, and look foreword to hearing from you again. Keep up your Good Works, you have a lot to offer.

    • Makes a lot of sense! I stay away from the sun since every sunscreen tends to ‘burn’ my skin after just 10 mins in the sun! I know I am not allergic to it since when I apply it, it doesn’t irritate, only when I go out in the sun! I have tried, every brand, spf and even for sensitive skin, nothing survies the 10 mins Sun test. As for my kids since we live in sunny australia, I make them wear UV protective clothes it works a lot better than sunscreen.

  20. Penny says:

    I had a non malignant skin cancer removed from my forehead a few years ago. I can’t say enough about how important it is to do prevention and don’t wait ! Go get that bothersome spot checked!
    I grew up in SoCal so I know what you mean about the intense sunshine. And, I live in Texas!
    I like sleeves and will be ordering some soon.
    Best to you and thanks for following my blog!

  21. Reblogged this on chipsterhealth's Blog and commented:
    This is one of those things that need to be talked about often.

  22. Thanks for following our blog: Ian Moore-Morrans, Scottish Canadian Author and Gayle Moore-Morrans, Editor & Blogger. You do a good service here, pointing out the dangers of skin cancer and need for awareness and prevention. Have you checked out a previous blog of ours regarding Ian’s background of too much sun in Egypt during his 20s and now several bouts with skin cancer in his senior years? See our post “Why I’m Participating in Movember” from November 9, 2012.

  23. John says:

    Thank you for following my website, I appreciate this. 🙂

  24. Sunnysleevez,
    It’s great you are so proactive in striving to raise awareness about skin cancer. Also, as you are a skin cancer survivor I think people want to hear what you have to say, more than, say, even a dermatologist. I admire you for your diligence in getting the word, along with the scientific info about cancer, out there. We all need to hear this. Thank you for stopping by my blog and following it. I find it rewarding to think that I, like you, have something important to say.

  25. I have had two moles removed for biopsy, and thankfully they were both fine. It is such a scary thing though and I am the sunscreen queen.

  26. christianears says:

    this was very easy to read and understand thank you

  27. Thank you for this great blog. Both my grandfather and first cousin had skin cancer so I wasn’t terribly surprised when a small basal patch popped up on me. I live in San Diego so it is tough not to be in the sun all year round but I swear by good sunscreen and hats or visors. You can never be too safe.

  28. joycblack says:

    Hi Sunny Sleevez,
    Thanks for this really in-depth and helpful post! You are providing such valuable information!

  29. janelily7 says:

    I lived in South Africa/Rhodesia until I was 48 years old. I did not enjoy the sun but it is difficult to avoid the sun entirely. I now live in the UK and can enjoy what little sun there is without panicking. Thank for following my blog and for this very interesting piece.

  30. Viking Queen says:

    Hi, thanks for following my website. I am a survivor of Skin cancer from the nineteen eighties. It creeps up on you doesn’t it?

  31. freespirit424 says:

    Thanks for following my blog. Your article is easy to read and understand. Good information. I spent 15 years in the tropics and I’m now in Mexico. I have lots of sun damage. It’s difficult to avoid it some times. It’s important to get checked over regularly

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