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Anais Brasileiros de Dermatologia

Print version ISSN 0365-0596

Abstract

SCHMITT, Juliano Vilaverde  and  MIOT, Hélio Amante. Actinic keratosis: a clinical and epidemiological revision. An. Bras. Dermatol. [online]. 2012, vol.87, n.3, pp. 425-434. ISSN 0365-0596.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0365-05962012000300012.

Actinic keratoses are benign intraepithelial skin neoplasms constituted by atypical proliferation of keratinocytes that may evolve to squamous cell carcinoma. They develop in photoexposed skin areas; they are induced mainly by ultraviolet radiation and are considered cutaneous markers of chronic exposure to sunlight. They develop mainly in adults and older, fair skinned individuals, and are the fourth most common cause of dermatologic consultation in Brazil. Damage to the apoptosis pathway in photoexposed epithelium favors cellular proliferation and the permanence of the lesions. In this revision, the authors assemble the main epidemiological data regarding this disease and suggest that strategies to identify risky phenotypes, early diagnosis, adequate treatment, clinical follow-up, stimulus to skin self examination, photoeducation and photoprotection should be promoted with the aim of avoiding the progression to malignancy and also the prevention and the diagnose of concomitant neoplasms also induced by ultraviolet radiation.

Keywords : apoptosis; carcinoma, squamous cell; epidemiology; keratosis, actinic; ultraviolet rays.

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