Rough and scaly-feeling patches of skin are called actinic keratosis. They are caused by overexposure to the sun, and are sometimes precursors to skin cancer.
Dermatologists have estimated that around 40% of all squamous cell carcinomas (the second-most deadly type of skin cancer) started off as actinic keratosis.
Because of this, if you have a suspicious patch of skin on your body, see a dermatologist or trained medical doctor to have it biopsied.
WHAT CAUSES ACTINIC KERATOSIS?
The main causes of actinic keratosis are long-term and extreme exposure to the harmful rays of the sun. In order to avoid getting them, the best thing to do is avoid the sun.
Wear protective clothing, stay in the shade and wear sunblock or sunscreen to protect against UVA and UVB rays.
WHAT TREATMENT OPTIONS ARE AVAILABLE?
Actinic keratosis are treated with various types of topical medications, or are removed via frozen or electronic methods.