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Primary care review of actinic keratosis and its therapeutic options: a global perspective.

Chetty P, Choi F, Mitchell T - Dermatol Ther (Heidelb) (2015)

Bottom Line: The higher incidence of AK in fair-skinned people in Australia has resulted in well-established management strategies and guidelines for its treatment, compared with countries with lower incidence.Primary care physicians are often the first to see this condition in their patients and are perfectly placed to educate the public and raise awareness.It is therefore desirable that their education and knowledge about AK and its treatment are up to date.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Beach Avenue Medical Clinic, Peachland, BC, Canada, drpchetty@gmail.com.

ABSTRACT
Actinic keratosis (AK) is a common skin condition caused by long-term sun exposure that has the potential to progress to non-melanoma skin cancers. The objective of this review is to examine the therapeutic options and management of AK globally, particularly in Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom. Despite its potentially malignant nature, general awareness of AK is low, both in the general population and in the primary health care setting, especially in countries with low incidence. There is no standard therapeutic strategy for AK; it is treated through a variety of lesion-directed or field-directed therapies or a combination of both. A variety of treatment options are used depending on the experience of the primary care physician, the pathology of the lesion, and patient factors. Studies have shown that the physicians do not always use the optimal treatment option because of a lack of knowledge. The higher incidence of AK in fair-skinned people in Australia has resulted in well-established management strategies and guidelines for its treatment, compared with countries with lower incidence. It is essential to raise the awareness of AK because of its potential to progress to invasive squamous cell carcinoma. Primary care physicians are often the first to see this condition in their patients and are perfectly placed to educate the public and raise awareness. It is therefore desirable that their education and knowledge about AK and its treatment are up to date.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Clinical variants of AKs. a Hyperkeratotic AK. b AK with field change (forehead and partial scalp). c Classical AK (milder degree of field change on the arm). d AK with adjacent hyperpigmented areas. AK Actinic keratosis. Images are published with permission from the New Zealand Dermatological Society Incorporated
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Related In: Results  -  Collection


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Fig2: Clinical variants of AKs. a Hyperkeratotic AK. b AK with field change (forehead and partial scalp). c Classical AK (milder degree of field change on the arm). d AK with adjacent hyperpigmented areas. AK Actinic keratosis. Images are published with permission from the New Zealand Dermatological Society Incorporated

Mentions: The potential for malignant transformation is a reason for concern about the poor public awareness of AK. Intraepidermal proliferation of atypical keratinocytes can be seen on AK lesions, and studies have shown that up to 16% of AKs progress to invasive SCCs [5]. One reason for the low level of AK awareness is the wide range of variations in its clinical presentation (Fig. 1), which include the cutaneous horn, the pink and pearly lichenoid AK, pigmented AK, and actinic cheilitis [4]. The clinical variants of AKs are shown in Fig. 2.Fig. 1


Primary care review of actinic keratosis and its therapeutic options: a global perspective.

Chetty P, Choi F, Mitchell T - Dermatol Ther (Heidelb) (2015)

Clinical variants of AKs. a Hyperkeratotic AK. b AK with field change (forehead and partial scalp). c Classical AK (milder degree of field change on the arm). d AK with adjacent hyperpigmented areas. AK Actinic keratosis. Images are published with permission from the New Zealand Dermatological Society Incorporated
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4374063&req=5

Fig2: Clinical variants of AKs. a Hyperkeratotic AK. b AK with field change (forehead and partial scalp). c Classical AK (milder degree of field change on the arm). d AK with adjacent hyperpigmented areas. AK Actinic keratosis. Images are published with permission from the New Zealand Dermatological Society Incorporated
Mentions: The potential for malignant transformation is a reason for concern about the poor public awareness of AK. Intraepidermal proliferation of atypical keratinocytes can be seen on AK lesions, and studies have shown that up to 16% of AKs progress to invasive SCCs [5]. One reason for the low level of AK awareness is the wide range of variations in its clinical presentation (Fig. 1), which include the cutaneous horn, the pink and pearly lichenoid AK, pigmented AK, and actinic cheilitis [4]. The clinical variants of AKs are shown in Fig. 2.Fig. 1

Bottom Line: The higher incidence of AK in fair-skinned people in Australia has resulted in well-established management strategies and guidelines for its treatment, compared with countries with lower incidence.Primary care physicians are often the first to see this condition in their patients and are perfectly placed to educate the public and raise awareness.It is therefore desirable that their education and knowledge about AK and its treatment are up to date.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Beach Avenue Medical Clinic, Peachland, BC, Canada, drpchetty@gmail.com.

ABSTRACT
Actinic keratosis (AK) is a common skin condition caused by long-term sun exposure that has the potential to progress to non-melanoma skin cancers. The objective of this review is to examine the therapeutic options and management of AK globally, particularly in Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom. Despite its potentially malignant nature, general awareness of AK is low, both in the general population and in the primary health care setting, especially in countries with low incidence. There is no standard therapeutic strategy for AK; it is treated through a variety of lesion-directed or field-directed therapies or a combination of both. A variety of treatment options are used depending on the experience of the primary care physician, the pathology of the lesion, and patient factors. Studies have shown that the physicians do not always use the optimal treatment option because of a lack of knowledge. The higher incidence of AK in fair-skinned people in Australia has resulted in well-established management strategies and guidelines for its treatment, compared with countries with lower incidence. It is essential to raise the awareness of AK because of its potential to progress to invasive squamous cell carcinoma. Primary care physicians are often the first to see this condition in their patients and are perfectly placed to educate the public and raise awareness. It is therefore desirable that their education and knowledge about AK and its treatment are up to date.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus