ZocdocAnswersWhat to do about DSAP?

Question

What to do about DSAP?

I'm a middle-aged man and am 90 % confident that I have diagnosed myself with DSAP on my chest and arms, and possibly on my back. If I have this, what does it mean for my health, and how should I respond now?

Answer

Disseminated superficial actinic porokeratosis is a rare skin condition in which circular brownish spots form, generally on the arms and legs. The disorder is much more common in women than in men, and it is often inherited (meaning there will be other members of your family with a history of the same skin condition). Given all of these facts, it is unlikely (although not impossible) that what you have is indeed disseminated superficial actinic porokeratosis. It is much more likely that you have a more common form of keratosis (proliferation of the hard top layer of skin cells), such as actinic keratosis. Actinic keratosis develops in sun exposed areas of skin, typically on the arms, chest, and face. It is a risk factor for developing skin cancer down the road, and therefore all people with actinic keratosis need frequent skin exams by their primary care doctor. Concerning or prominent spots may need treatment, either by surgical removal, freezing, or application of certain topical medicines. DSAP also, if this is in fact what you have, is also a risk factor for skin cancer, and treatment for it is similar to treatment for actinic keratosis (observation, and targeted treatment of suspicious areas). You should talk to your primary care doctor or dermatologist in order to obtain a definitive diagnosis.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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