Foot Cancer Happens


ON YOUR TOES FOR FOOT CANCER AWARENESS

It may not seem common, but there are in fact several different kinds of cancer that can affect your feet.  They happen to also be most of the overlooked kinds of cancer such as melanoma.

The next time you change your socks, your shoes or proceed to care for your feet, conduct a thorough self-examination of your feet and toes.  Like all kinds of cancer, early detection plays a critical rile in increasing the efectiveness of treatment and of survival.

During Cancer Awareness Month the OPMA will be focused on skin cancer affecting feet, tumours and cancer of foot bones.

The three types of skin that can and do appear on feet include:

Squamous Cell Carcinoma

This is a non-melanoma skin cancer that usually begins on sun-damaged, inflamed or injured skin.  It is the most common kind of cancer that can develop on the skin of your feet.

This kind of cancer is usually non-aggressive and not quick or likely to spread unless ignored.  It can become aggressive in its later stages. it can appear in the form of a small, firm, red bump or a flat patch with a scaly or crusty surface.  It most commonly has irregular borders and can sometimes itch or bleed.

Basal Cell Carcinoma

This is also a non-melanoma skin cancer.  It usually develops on parts of skin that have had the most sun exposure. 

Look for pearly white bumps or patches that bleed easily, ooze or crust more like a sore. 

Again, this form of cancer is not usually fast-moving

Malignant Melanoma

One of the deadliest forms of skin cancer.  Watch for a separate feature just on melanoma and feet. It is aggressive.  It can spread quickly through the lymphatic system and blood vessels. The best way to spot malignant melanoma is it appears as a small black or brown spot that increases in size. 


Remember, it can appear underneath toenails as well as on top or bottom of the feet.

Bone tumors grow when cells in the bone divide without control, forming a mass of tissue. Most bone tumors are benign, which means they are not cancer and do not spread to other areas of the body. But they may still weaken bone and lead to broken bones or cause other problems. Watch for a separate feature on foot tumours. Bone cancer destroys normal bone tissue. It may start in the bone or spread from other parts of the body (called metastasis).  Watch for a separate feature on bone cancer and feet.


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