Actinic Keratosis Warning Signs and Images

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How to Recognize Actinic Keratosis

Examples of typical actinic keratoses are shown here, so examine your skin regularly for lesions that look like them. But it’s not always that simple: Many actinic keratoses have quite a different appearance, so if you find any unusual or changing growth, be suspicious and see your doctor promptly.


  • Numerous actinic keratoses on bald scalp revealing chronic sun damage. They are elevated, rough in texture, and resemble warts.
  • Two typical keratoses on rim of ear. The top lesion is crusted, the lower one rough in appearance.

  • While most keratoses have a fine sandpapery roughness, others such as this lesion have an obviously scaly, crusty surface.

  • Lower lip with cracks filled with dried blood and horn-shaped scale covering large keratosis.