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Sunscreen on Your Feet?

By Clayton H. Culp, D.P.M.

When at the pool we all lather up with sunscreen to protect our skin from the harmful rays of the sun. But do we remember to apply sunscreen to our feet?

Many don’t realize skin cancer can occur on the feet from unprotected sun exposure and overlook applying sunscreen to the area. But, Clayton H. Culp, DPM, AACFAS warns skin cancer of the foot is prevalent and can even be fatal if not caught early.

While all types of skin cancer, including squamous cell and basal cell carcinoma, can be found on the foot, the most common is the most serious form, melanoma. Symptoms can be as subtle as an abnormal-looking mole or freckle found anywhere on the foot and often go unnoticed without routine foot exams.

According to foot and ankle surgeon Dr. Culp, early diagnosis is key to effective treatment for the condition. But because people aren’t looking for the early warning signs or taking the same precautions they do for other areas of the body, often times skin cancer in this region is not diagnosed until later stages.

“I advise my patients to regularly inspect their feet, including the soles, between their toes and even under their toenails for any changing moles or spots and to have any suspicious areas promptly examined by a foot and ankle specialist,” Dr. Culp explains. 

For more information on skin cancer of the foot, contact Dr. Culp at 817-447-5598 or visit the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeon’s Web site, FootPhysicians.com.