Actinic Keratosis (AK) are pre-cancers that have about a 10% chance of turning into a Squamous Cell Cancer (SCC) over about 10 years.
AKs demonstrate that a person has had enough sun, and the right genetics, to start growing pre-cancers as well as cancers. They feel like little grains of sandpaper, usually on a slightly red background. And, they usually do not go away on their own. Since long term exposure to sun is the usual reason people get AKs, they usually appear on heavily sun exposed areas like the head, neck, forearms and hands.
Actinic Keratosis are usually easily treatable by either freezing them with liquid nitrogen, topical medications, and light therapies. You can find links to these keratosis treatment modalities below.