Cancer of the foot may be uncommon, but it’s not unheard of. What residents of New York City should look out for is continual cracking, bleeding and ulceration in their feet. They should be aware that not all cancers are caused by exposure to the sun’s rays. In the case of foot cancer, it could be attributed to genetics, viruses or exposure to certain chemicals.

There are several forms of cancer that can affect the foot. Basal cell carcinoma is directly linked with sun exposure and so tends to be rare. The cancer will look like a benign ulcer. Then there is squamous cell carcinoma, which begins as a scaly bump and may start to resemble a number of conditions from eczema to plantar warts or fungal infections. This cancer can be much more aggressive than basal cell carcinoma, especially in its later stage.

What’s more aggressive is malignant melanoma. This is one of those cancers that must be detected early; otherwise, there’s little hope for survival. It can appear anywhere on the foot: on the soles, on the top of the foot, on the skin and beneath the toenails. Melanoma will look like a brown-black bump and may be mistaken for a mole. It’s different from a mole in its asymmetry, its ragged edges and other characteristics.

Podiatrists are best qualified to tell when something is foot cancer or not. However, if a podiatrist fails to diagnose a cancer, the victim may have good grounds for a medical malpractice case claim. The victim will have to show that the doctor failed to live up to a generally accepted standard of medical care. Other requirements will need to be met, too, so it may be wise to have a lawyer assist with negotiations.