Why Skin Care of the Foot and Ankle is Often Ignored
Did you know that in general skin care of the foot and ankle is often ignored? We discuss the importance of routine skin cancer screenings of the foot and ankle.
Dr. Roy, what should we be looking for?
Dr. Roy: When it comes to the overall skin care of the foot and ankle, one should look for any and all changes, including new skin lesions.
Daria N.: What do the changes look like?
Dr. Roy: Well I like to approach it in slightly different manner, where we can rule out all these changes and compare them to dangerous skin conditions such as melanoma. One of these things would be the symmetry of the skin lesion, where one can draw a line through it and if it’s equal on both sides, that says it’s relative benign, or safe.
Daria N.: So if the lesion is not symmetric in shape, then you would recommend a doctor look at it?
Dr. Roy: That is correct. If it’s asymmetric in shape one should go to your medical professional for further evaluation. This goes along with the overall boarders of the lesions where it should be equal all around and if there’s any discrepancy, a healthcare professional should take a further look.
Daria N.: What about the color of the lesion?
Dr. Roy: The color is very important as well. There should be no shading in between that’s mixed. It should be uniform overall with the entire lesion.
Daria N.: How about the lesions size?
Dr. Roy: The size is a key factor. The magic number I like to say is six millimeters. That’s about the diameter of a ballpoint pen. One could measure with a generic ruler at home, but have it further sized at a medical professionals.
Daria N.: When it comes to feet and ankles, where do we exactly look at?
Dr. Roy: Well it’s very easy to miss those critical areas such as in between the toes and underneath the foot. These are very critical although those areas that we normally should see should be evaluated on a routine manner.
Daria N.: So if god forbid lesion looks suspicious, how do you treat it?
Dr. Roy: Well it’s crucial that a healthcare professional evaluate all lesions. One of the treatment options that we have available is a skin biopsy. We can look under the microscope and evaluate if a skin lesion appears dangerous in any manner.
Daria N.: So what is the most important thing here to remember?
Dr. Roy: Above all else, a timely detection of these lesions would be crucial. There are many factors that we are looking into but timing can make these lesions grow, change in ways, along with symptoms such as itchiness and pain, which further make the detection worrisome and it’s very important for early detection.
Daria N.: As you can see, DeLoor Podiatry Associates is about every facet of foot and ankle care, including your skin. Cure is the operative word here, because we truly care about anything that sidelines you from your daily life. So you can walk in good health.