Comprehensive Treatment of Facial Skin Cancers
13 September 2013 (online)
It is no wonder everyone is so confused about the benefits or dangers of sun exposure. We are told that we need to get 15 minutes of unprotected sun exposure each day so that our bodies will produce enough Vitamin D. We are also told that a lack of exposure to sunny skies can put us at risk for seasonal-affective disorder. Based on what decade you were born, you may have grown up slathering on baby oil or may have been instructed by your physician to “treat” your acne by actively tanning. The public gets changing messages about sunscreens, sun protection factor (SPF), “broad spectrum coverage;” it goes on and on. Clearly, we have a love–hate relationship with the sun. It can make us a feel so good, yet too much can put our very lives in jeopardy from skin cancer. From the “routine” basal cell carcinoma to the potentially life-threatening melanoma, I am pleased to have assembled some of the premier authorities on this topic for this issue of Facial Plastic Surgery.
As physicians, we must continually work to educate the public about the potential dangers of excessive sun exposure. We must also take time with each patient to educate them on the most common signs of malignant skin lesions. As in all disease processes, prevention is always the best front-line treatment. However, the laws of nature will most certainly guarantee that for many years to come we will have significant numbers of patients who need care for and repair of skin cancers of the face, neck, and nose. I hope that by assembling such an all-star panel of experts this work will serve to better educate physicians and reconstructive surgeons by disseminating both established standards as well as new and innovative ideas.
I sincerely thank each author who undoubtedly took countless hours away from their professional or personal time to contribute to this issue of Facial Plastic Surgery. I believe you will find this issue an especially good read.