Actinic keratosis is associated with cumulative skin damage, caused by repeated exposure to the ultraviolet light found in sunshine. Over the years, the genetic material of cells becomes irreparably damaged and produces lesions similar to the ones in this photograph. The lesions may later become cancerous (pre-cancerous).
Review Date 10/14/2018
Updated by: Michael Lehrer, MD, Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Dermatology, University of Pennsylvania Medical Center, Philadelphia, PA. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.