They are usually asymptomatic but may be tender. The frequency of actinic keratoses increases with increasing age and cumulative lifetime sun exposure. They are also more common in immunosuppressed individuals (especially after solid organ transplantation). They may resolve with protection from ultraviolet (UV) light. Some medications (ie, capecitabine, sorafenib) may induce inflammation of existing actinic keratoses.
Patients with actinic keratoses are at higher risk for developing non-melanoma skin cancer. Actinic keratoses have the potential to evolve into squamous cell carcinoma. It is estimated that the likelihood that a given actinic keratosis will evolve into an invasive squamous cell carcinoma is approximately 0.075%-0.096% per lesion.
Related topic: Actinic cheilitis
L57.0 – Actinic keratosis
201101007 – Actinic keratosis
- Superficial basal cell carcinoma
- Bowen disease
- Flat wart
- Common wart
- Seborrheic dermatitis – Patients with significant seborrheic dermatitis will benefit from initial treatment of dermatitis before beginning treatment for actinic keratosis.
- Squamous cell carcinoma
- Seborrheic keratosis
- Discoid lupus erythematosus
- Disseminated superficial actinic porokeratosis
- Severe xerosis – Wiping the skin with water or an alcohol pad will minimize background xerosis. In addition, xerosis lacks the classic gritty sensation on light palpation.
- Lentigo (pigmented variant)
- Lentigo maligna (pigmented variant)
Last Updated: 06/01/2018