Topical Treatment for Skin Cancer

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Topical Treatment for Skin Cancer

Topical Treatment for Skin Cancer Some skin stains and tumors can be treated with creams or gels on prescription by your doctor, who will apply them directly to the skin. This is called local treatment. They may contain immunotherapeutic or chemotherapeutic drugs as active ingredients.

Topical Treatment for Skin Cancer


Sun spots, superficial BCC and squamous cell carcinoma in situ (Bowen disease) can be treated with Imiquimod cream (brand Aldara). This is a kind of immunotherapy drug that causes the body’s immune system to destroy the cancer cells. They apply Imiquimod once a day at night directly to the affected area, usually five days a week for six weeks.

Imiquimod can lead to braking and crusting, which can be uncomfortable. The treated skin can be red and inflamed and can be delicate to touch. Some people have a more serious reaction to Imiquimod, but this is unusual. Symptoms include pain or itching in the affected area, fever, sore joints, headaches, and rash. If you experience any of these more serious side effects, stop using the cream and see your doctor immediately.

5-Fluorouracil (5-FU) This cream is used to treat superficial bccs, sun spots and sometimes squamous cell carcinoma in situ (Bowen’s disease). It works best on face and scalp.

Your GP or dermatologist will tell you how to apply the cream and how often. Many people use it twice a day for three to four weeks.

As you use the cream, you will be more sensitive to the sun and must stay out of the sun. The treated skin can turn red, blow, peel and crack and often feel uncomfortable. These effects will usually settle within a few weeks after the treatment has been completed.

Topical Treatment for Skin Cancer

This new type of topical chemotherapy for sunspots is a gel that is applied to the affected skin once a day for two or three days. Side effects include skin negation, shallowest or scaling, mild swelling, crusts or scars and blisters. These side effects should disappear within a few weeks after completion of the treatment.

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