Research shows one type accounts for 200,000 operations a year with cases rising 80 per cent in a decade.

Skin cancer is now nearly as prevalent as all other cancers put together, with more than 200,000 basal cell skin cancers treated with surgery a year. New research has found that, over the past decade, there has been an 80 per cent rise in cases of the skin cancer which are treated with surgery alone. But doctors who carried out the study warn that official government skin cancer figures seriously underestimate the true levels. With costs of treating each case of this form of skin cancer estimated at around £1,000, the financial burden to the NHS could be more than £200m a year.

"Our study shows that the number of basal cell carcinomas (BCC) in the UK is approximately twice that indicated by government statistics," said doctors from Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and Eastern Cancer Registration Centre, Cambridge, who carried out the study. "The effects on population health and on costs to the health services of BCC in the UK should be recognised. Resources to prevent, diagnose and manage the disease should be prioritised to help control BCC, which now appears to be the commonest malignant disease in the UK."

Article taken from The Independent where you can read the full report.