What is keratosis?
Keratosis is a common and harmless skin change that develops as a result of the multiplication of the surface layer of the skin (epidermis) and the formation of scaly (keratin) deposits.
When does keratosis typically appear?
Keratosis usually develops with age but can appear in the third decade of life if a person is prone to it.
Where does keratosis usually appear?
Keratosis can appear anywhere on your skin, except on your palms and soles. However, these skin growths usually appear on the skin that gets exposed to the sun more often, as the face and the upper part of your back.
What are the symptoms of keratosis?
In the beginning, keratoses appear as yellow or brown flat skin growths with distinctive borders. As they grow, however, they become slightly raised, scaly, and darker in color. Keratoses can grow up to a couple of centimeters and often resemble pigmented moles.
What are the different types of keratosis?
There are several types of keratosis:
- Seborrheic keratosis (Keratosis seborrhoica), which is usually darker in color, soft and waxy, and may appear anywhere on the skin.
- Actinic (solar) keratosis (Keratosis actinica) appears on the skin that is exposed to the sun, such as the area around your face, and can be precancerous, i.e. it can lead to squamous cell carcinoma of the skin. Actinic keratoses are yellowish and usually thinner compared to seborrheic keratosis.
- Stucco keratoses develop in older patients that have dry skin. They usually appear around ankles and lower leg area. They are smaller (up to few millimeters), in the color of the skin, dry, with a hard surface, and sometimes look like they are sprinkled with baby powder.
How to diagnose keratosis?
Keratosis is diagnosed with the help of clinical and dermoscopy examination. The pathohistological report is necessary in the case of the suspected tumor or actinic keratosis.
Dermoscopy examination is mandatory at DIVA Medical because some skin tumors (malignant melanoma) can resemble keratosis. If the examined change is diagnosed as actinic keratosis, or not keratosis at all, the sample is sent to pathohistological examination after the removal.
How is keratosis removed?
At Diva Medical, each type of keratosis is removed with the help of radio wave surgery. The procedure is painless, done under local anesthesia, and without blood and stitches. The recovery period is quick and since keratoses are superficial skin changes they usually do not leave any scars.
Is there any recovery period after the procedure?
There is no recovery period if keratoses are removed with radio waves. A topical anesthetic is applied prior to the intervention, so the procedure is completely pain-free. Once the keratosis is removed, the treated spot is covered with the small wound, which turns into a scab as it heals but leaves no scars behind.
Should keratosis be removed by a dermatology specialist?
At Diva Medical and Diva Laser Centre located in Slavija and Novi Beograd, the procedure is done by dermatologists who have decades of clinical practice.