Actinic Keratosis

Learn More About Actinic Keratosis Treatments at Aurora

What is Actinic Keratosis?

Actinic keratosis (AK) is a scaly or crusty bump that appears on your skin’s surface. It’s also called solar keratosis because it is caused in part by sun damage. More than one keratosis is called keratoses.

The scale of the actinic keratosis may appear dry or rough, while the base may be tan, red, pink, skin colored or a combination of these colors. It also may itch or give you a tingling or prickly sensation.

Actinic keratosis can be the first sign of squamous cell skin cancer developing, and it’s considered a pre-cancerous condition. If you have actinic keratoses, you have had skin damage that can lead to skin cancer. This condition should not be ignored. We recommend seeing a dermatologist right away if you notice any dry, rough or scaly lesions on your skin.

How is Actinic Keratosis Treated?

At Aurora Health Care, our dermatologists will treat your actinic keratosis based upon many factors, including their expertise and experience treating others with the same condition, your age and health, and your medical history.

Treatment options are:

  • Freezing the lesion(s) through a procedure called cryotherapy
  • Applying topical chemotherapy medications (anti-cancer drugs) to the affected areas
  • Surgically removing the keratoses through minor surgery, photodynamic therapy, chemical peels, and laser procedures
  • Photodynamic therapy

Depending upon the severity of your keratosis, your dermatologist may recommend other treatment options as well. Because actinic keratosis is considered a pre-cancerous condition, it’s important to have it treated and to continue to have your skin checked regularly for recurrence.

Why Should I Choose Aurora Health Care to Treat my Actinic Keratosis?

When it comes to caring for your skin, you want the best. And, at Aurora, our dermatologists are dedicated to providing the best, most advanced skin care treatments available.

Because Aurora dermatologists work within the entire Aurora Health Care system, we can offer you so much more than simple dermatology care. At Aurora, you’ll get:

  • Expertise: A team of physicians, nurse practitioners and physician assistants care for you.
  • Innovation: You can expect innovative treatments using the latest advancements in technology.
  • Network of physicians: Being part of the Aurora network gives you access to specialized care for all of your health care needs, which is especially important for pre-cancerous skin conditions.
  • Attention to you: At Aurora, you’re never just another patient. You’re an important part of your health care team. No matter which procedure or treatment is right for you, your doctor will take time to discuss options with you and answer your questions before your treatment begins, giving you peace of mind.

Annual Skin Cancer Screening

Having an annual exam to check for skin changes and signs of cancer is not only important for people at high risk for skin cancer – it’s important for us all. At Aurora, we offer annual skin cancer checks, and we recommend that everyone also perform self-checks at least once a year.

How do I Schedule a Consultation with a Dermatologist?

To schedule a consultation or appointment with a dermatologist at Aurora, call one of the dermatology offices directly. View the list of Aurora dermatologists.