bill pay

Valley Dermatology

Skin Cancer Screening

Skin cancer screening is a crucial aspect of preventive healthcare, aimed at identifying early signs of skin cancer for timely intervention. At Valley Dermatology and Skin Cancer Center, we prioritize your skin health, and our skin cancer screening services are designed to offer proactive care.

Led by our experienced dermatologists, our screenings involve thorough examinations to detect any early signs of skin cancer, ensuring your well-being through comprehensive and personalized skin care.

What is Skin Cancer Screening?

What is Skin Cancer Screening?

Skin cancer screening is a medical examination performed by a healthcare professional, typically a dermatologist, to check for signs of skin cancer or precancerous conditions. The goal of a skin cancer screening is to identify any abnormalities, like unusual moles, growths, or changes in the skin, that may indicate the presence of skin cancer.

What is Skin Cancer?​

Skin cancer is the most common cancer in this country. 1 in 5 Americans will develop a skin cancer at some point in their life. The key to melanoma is finding it early. If melanoma is found before it spreads to the lymph nodes the 5 year survival rate is 99%. Skin cancer is primarily caused by the abnormal growth of skin cells due to damage from the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays or other sources of UV radiation, such as tanning beds. The three main types of skin cancer are:


The most common type of skin cancer, BCC usually appears on areas exposed to the sun, such as the face, head, and neck. It tends to grow slowly and is generally considered less aggressive than other types.


SCC also often occurs in sun-exposed areas and can develop from precursor skin lesions. While it is usually slow-growing, it has a higher potential to spread compared to basal cell carcinoma.


Melanoma is less common but more aggressive. It originates in the pigment-producing cells (melanocytes) and can occur anywhere on the skin. Melanoma has a higher risk of spreading to other parts of the body, making early detection and treatment critical.

Service Guide

Download the exclusive Valley Dermatology Service Guide to learn more about our aesthetic and medical dermatology treatments.

What Happens During a Screening for Skin Cancer?

What Happens During a Screening for Skin Cancer?

During a skin cancer screening at Valley Dermatology, we examine our patient’s skin from head to toe, including areas that are not typically exposed to the sun. We look for the “ABCDEs” of melanoma, which stands for:

Risk Factors of Skin Cancer

Several factors can increase an individual’s risk of developing skin cancer. Some of the primary risk factors include:

Excessive Sun Exposure

Prolonged exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun is a major risk factor for skin cancer. This includes both sunburns and cumulative sun exposure over time.

Indoor Tanning

The use of tanning beds or lamps increases the risk of skin cancer, as they emit UV radiation that can damage the skin.

Fair Skin

People with fair skin, light hair, and light-colored eyes are generally more susceptible to the harmful effects of UV radiation and have a higher risk of developing skin cancer.

Family History

A family history of skin cancer, especially melanoma, can elevate the risk for other family members.

Personal Skin Cancer Diagnosis

If an individual has previously been diagnosed with skin cancer, there is an increased risk of developing additional skin cancers.

Weakened Immune System

Conditions or medications that suppress the immune system can elevate the risk of skin cancer.

Skin Cancer Treatment Options

Skin Cancer Treatment Options

The choice of treatment depends on factors like the type, stage, and location of the skin cancer, as well as the patient’s overall health. At Valley Dermatology, we work closely with patients to develop personalized treatment plans tailored to their specific circumstances. Early detection and intervention are key in achieving successful outcomes for skin cancer treatments.

Surgery is a primary treatment because it can successfully remove the cancerous tissue. At Valley Dermatology, we offer Mohs micrographic surgery, a precise technique that minimizes damage to healthy tissue. It can be used for certain types of skin cancer.

Other types of treatment options include cryotherapy, radiation therapy, topical medications and immunotherapy.

Frequently Asked Questions

Skin cancer can manifest in various ways, but common signs include changes in the size, shape, color or texture of moles or the development of new and unusual growths on the skin.

While most moles are harmless, changes in their appearance or the emergence of new moles can be cause for concern. Pay attention to the ABCDEs: asymmetry, irregular borders, uneven coloring, diameter larger than 6 millimeters, and evolution over time.

The frequency of skin cancer screenings depends on individual risk factors, but as a general guideline, adults should consider an annual full-body skin examination by a dermatologist.

Why Choose Valley Dermatology for Skin Cancer Screening

Valley Dermatology and Skin Cancer Center is dedicated to delivering the most comprehensive and compassionate dermatological care in the Pacific Northwest. Our mission is twofold: to offer top-notch medical services and to ensure the best possible experience for every patient. We prioritize attentive listening, answering questions, and addressing concerns before crafting personalized skin treatment plans.

Led by Dr. Scott Smith, our Medical Director and founding dermatologist, our exceptional team of cosmetic and aesthetic skin care professionals is committed to providing unparalleled service. Our specialties include skin cancer treatments, such as Mohs micrographic surgery, as well as cosmetic services like Botox, dermal fillers, laser hair removal, microneedling, and more. Achieve beautiful skin with proper care – your journey to healthier skin starts here at Valley Dermatology and Skin Cancer Center. Contact us today to schedule an appointment!


(509) 892-6708

Don't Miss Our 10th Annual Open House Specials!

Just because you missed our open house event friday night doesn’t mean you have to miss out on the specials! Shop all our event specials through midnight Sunday.

Sale Ends:

Service Guide

Download the exclusive Valley Dermatology Service Guide to learn more about our aesthetic and medical dermatology treatments.