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How Common Is Basal Cell Carcinoma

Skin Cancer Is The Most Common Form Of Cancer In The United States

Basal Cell Carcinoma (BCC) | Skin Cancer | Dermatology for Patients

Bccs arise from abnormal, uncontrolled growth of basal cells. 19.10.2021 · skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the united states. Basal cell carcinoma is the most common type of skin cancer. Also known as bcc, this skin cancer tends to grow slowly and can be mistaken for a harmless pimple, scar, or sore. They usually form on the head, face, neck, hands, and arms. Basal cell carcinoma is common. Alone, an estimated 3.6 million cases are diagnosed each year. As the most common type of cancer in the world, doctors diagnose millions of people with bcc every year. Another type of skin cancer, melanoma, is more dangerous but less common. Learn more about basal cell carcinoma including what it looks like, its symptoms, causes, diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis at webmd. Often a dark crust develops in the middle, which could bleed with a light touch. Basal cell carcinoma is the most common form of skin cancer and the most frequently occurring form of all cancers. The tissue of the nodule can also look somewhat

The lesions tend to develop slowly and can grow into a large tumor, sometimes with central ulceration. If you’ve been diagnosed with basal cell carcinoma or bcc, you have plenty of company. The two most common types are basal cell cancer and squamous cell cancer. Bccs arise from abnormal, uncontrolled growth of basal cells. Another type of skin cancer, melanoma, is more dangerous but less common.

Is Basal Cell Carcinoma Serious Lets Ask Hugh Jackman

Hugh Jackman is no stranger to skin cancer. In August, 2021 the Australian actor posted an after having a second skin biopsy in two years. He urged fans to get their skin checked. A couple of notes please get skin checks often, please dont think it wont happen to you and, above all, please wear sunscreen.

Jackman is committed to raising awareness by using social media to discuss his skin cancer history. In a follow-up post, he explains If by posting about this I remind one person to go see their dermatologist, Im happy.

In 2017, the last time Jackman dealt with basal cell carcinoma , he posted a photo of himself on Instagram showing the aftermath of skin cancer surgery. He assured fans he was okay in his posts caption, thanking frequent skin checks and amazing doctors.

Basal cell carcinoma is the most common form of skin cancer, with more than 3.6 million cases diagnosed in the U.S. each year. BCC almost never spreads beyond the original tumor site though, and the cure rate after excisional surgery is above 95 percent in most body areas. So, is this form of cancer even something to worry about?

Basal cell carcinoma is not something to be taken lightly, says Deborah S. Sarnoff, MD, president of The Skin Cancer Foundation. Once youve been diagnosed with a BCC, its very likely that you will develop more over the years, leading to continuous treatment and possibly even disfiguration.

Who Is Affected By Basal Cell Carcinoma

Basal cell carcinoma affects slightly more men than women. It occurs more often in older people. People with fair skin and light eyes are more likely to get BCC. It is 19 times more common in whites than blacks, but people of color may still be affected. People who have had BCC once are at higher risk for developing another lesion.

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How Can You Prevent Basal Cell Carcinoma

Being safe in the sun is the best way to prevent BCC and other skin cancers. Here are some tips:

  • Avoid being in the sun from 10 am to 4 pm.
  • Avoid tanning beds.
  • Use a broad spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher each day. If you will be outside for longer periods of time, use a broad spectrum sunscreen that is water-resistant and has an SPF of 30 or higher. Put the sunscreen on 30 minutes before going outside. Put sunscreen on again every two hours, or more frequently if you have been swimming or sweating a lot.
  • Use protective clothing that has built-in sun protection, which is measured in UPF. Also, use broad-brimmed hats and sunglasses.
  • Do your own skin self-exam about once per month and see a dermatologist about one time per year for a professional skin exam.
  • Have any skin changes examined as soon as possible by a healthcare provider.

What Is The Treatment For Primary Basal Cell Carcinoma

Basal Cell Carcinoma

The treatment for a BCC depends on its type, size and location, the number to be treated, patient factors, and the preference or expertise of the doctor. Most BCCs are treated surgically. Long-term follow-up is recommended to check for new lesions and recurrence the latter may be unnecessary if histology has reported wide clear margins.

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What Is A Basal Cell

One of three main types of cells in the top layer of the skin, basal cells shed as new ones form. BCC most often occurs when DNA damage from exposure to ultraviolet radiation from the sun or indoor tanning triggers changes in basal cells in the outermost layer of skin , resulting in uncontrolled growth.

What Are Basal And Squamous Cell Skin Cancers

Basal and squamous cell skin cancers are the most common types of skin cancer. They start in the top layer of skin , and are often related to sun exposure.

Cancer starts when cells in the body begin to grow out of control. Cells in nearly any part of the body can become cancer cells. To learn more about cancer and how it starts and spreads, see What Is Cancer?

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Prevention Of Basal Cell Carcinoma

Because basal cell carcinoma is often caused by sun exposure, people can help prevent this cancer by doing the following:

  • Avoiding the sun: For example, seeking shade, minimizing outdoor activities between 10 AM and 4 PM , and avoiding sunbathing and the use of tanning beds

  • Wearing protective clothing: For example, long-sleeved shirts, pants, and broad-brimmed hats

  • Using sunscreen: At least sun protection factor 30 with UVA and UVB protection used as directed and reapplied every 2 hours and after swimming or sweating but not used to prolong sun exposure

In addition, any skin change that lasts for more than a few weeks should be evaluated by a doctor.

What Are The Most Common Sites For Basal Cell Carcinoma

After Beating Skin Cancer, Mother Shares Story As Warning To Others

Periocular tumors most commonly involve the lower eyelid , followed by the medial canthus , the upper eyelid , and the lateral canthus . Examples are shown in the images below.

Though a literature review showed all authors agreed that periocular BCC most commonly occurs in the lower eyelid, the remaining anatomical locations and the incidence of occurrence differ among the studies.

Younger patients may have a lower prevalence of BCC on the head and neck and a higher prevalence on the trunk, with greater tendency to superficial BCC, than in older patients. Childhood BCC is exceedingly rare in the absence of other underlying conditions. Only 107 cases of de novo childhood BCC have been reported in the literature, but the majority occurred on the head and neck, and aggressive subtypes were observed in 20% of the total cases.

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What Are The Screening Options For Nbccs

Current screening recommendations for people who are known or suspected to have NBCCS include:

  • Neurologic evaluation every 6 months from birth to age 3, then every year to age 7 to look for signs of medulloblastoma or developmental disability

  • Measurement of head size regularly throughout childhood

  • Yearly dental x-rays, beginning at age 8, to look for jaw cysts

  • At least yearly skin exams to watch for basal cell skin cancer. The frequency of exams will vary based on how many basal cell cancers or other skin problems a person has experienced. Early treatment of basal cell skin cancer reduces the amount of surgery and scarring. Regular exams should begin by the teenage years.

Due to the high risk for multiple skin cancers, people with NBCCS should avoid sun exposure and protect their skin when outside. People with NBCCS should not receive radiation therapy, as this will increase the risk of basal cell skin cancers.

Screening recommendations may change over time as new technologies are developed and more is learned about NBCCS. It is important to talk to your health care team about appropriate screening tests. In general, if there is a good screening option that doesnt use radiation, that screening option should be used to avoid skin damage and basal cell cancers.

Learn more about what to expect when having common tests, procedures, and scans.

How Dangerous Is Bcc

While BCCs rarely spread beyond the original tumor site, if allowed to grow, these lesions can be disfiguring and dangerous. Untreated BCCs can become locally invasive, grow wide and deep into the skin and destroy skin, tissue and bone. The longer you wait to have a BCC treated, the more likely it is to recur, sometimes repeatedly.

There are some highly unusual, aggressive cases when BCC spreads to other parts of the body. In even rarer instances, this type of BCC can become life-threatening.

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Where Do Skin Cancers Start

Most skin cancers start in the top layer of skin, called the epidermis. There are 3 main types of cells in this layer:

  • Squamous cells: These are flat cells in the upper part of the epidermis, which are constantly shed as new ones form. When these cells grow out of control, they can develop into squamous cell skin cancer .
  • Basal cells: These cells are in the lower part of the epidermis, called the basal cell layer. These cells constantly divide to form new cells to replace the squamous cells that wear off the skins surface. As these cells move up in the epidermis, they get flatter, eventually becoming squamous cells. Skin cancers that start in the basal cell layer are called basal cell skin cancers or basal cell carcinomas.
  • Melanocytes: These cells make the brown pigment called melanin, which gives the skin its tan or brown color. Melanin acts as the bodys natural sunscreen, protecting the deeper layers of the skin from some of the harmful effects of the sun. Melanoma skin cancer starts in these cells.

The epidermis is separated from the deeper layers of skin by the basement membrane. When a skin cancer becomes more advanced, it generally grows through this barrier and into the deeper layers.

Where Does Bcc Develop

Basal Cell Carcinoma

As the above pictures show, this skin cancer tends to develop on skin that has had lots of sun exposure, such as the face or ears. Its also common on the bald scalp and hands. Other common areas for BCC include, the shoulders, back, arms, and legs.

While rare, BCC can also form on parts of the body that get little or no sun exposure, such as the genitals.

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What Causes Basal Cell Carcinoma

The commonest cause is exposure to ultraviolet light from the sun or from sunbeds. BCCs can occur anywhere on the body, but are most common on areas that are exposed to the sun such as your face, head, neck and ears. It is also possible for a BCC to develop in a longstanding scar. BCCs are not infectious.

BCCs mainly affect fair skinned adults, but other skin types are also at risk. Those with the highest risk of developing a basal cell carcinoma are:

  • People with pale skin who burn easily and rarely tan .
  • Those who have had a lot of exposure to the sun, such as people with outdoor hobbies or outdoor workers, and people who have lived in sunny climates.
  • People who have used sun beds or have regularly sunbathed.
  • People who have previously had a basal cell carcinoma.

How Is Basal Cell Carcinoma Treated

BCCs can almost always be successfully treated. Treatment will depend on the type, size and location of the BCC, and on your age and health.

If the BCC was removed during the biopsy, you may not need any further treatment. Surgery is the most common treatment for a BCC. It involves cutting out the skin spot and nearby normal-looking tissue. A pathologist will check the tissue around the skin spot to make sure the cancer has been removed. If cancer cells remain, you may need more surgery.

Other treatment options include:

  • freezing the spot with liquid nitrogen to kill the cancer cells
  • scraping off the spot, then using low-level electric current to seal the wound and kill cancer cells
  • immunotherapy creams, liquids and lotions, to treat superficial BCCs

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How Is Basal Cell Cancer Of The Head And Neck Diagnosed

Diagnosis is made by clinical exam and a biopsy. Basal cell cancers are staged by size and extent of growth. These cancers rarely metastasize to lymph nodes or other organs, but they can grow quite large and invade small nerves and local structures.

Biopsy can help determine if the basal cell cancer is a low-risk tumor or a high-risk tumor that requires more aggressive treatment. Low-risk tumors are often nodular and do not have nerve involvement. High-risk tumors in the head and neck are those that involve the central face, nose and eye area, as well as those tumors that are greater than or equal to 10 millimeters on the cheeks, scalp and neck tumors that are recurrent or arising from previously radiated tissue and tumors arising in patients who are immunosuppressed. An aggressive growth pattern on the pathology evaluation and perineural invasion are also features of high-risk basal cell cancers.

They Often Resemble Warts And Sometimes Resemble Open Bruises With Raised Crusty Edges

Examples of skin cancers

They usually form on the head, face, neck, hands, and arms. If you’ve been diagnosed with basal cell carcinoma or bcc, you have plenty of company. Also known as bcc, this skin cancer tends to grow slowly and can be mistaken for a harmless pimple, scar, or sore. The lesions tend to develop slowly and can grow into a large tumor, sometimes with central ulceration. Often a dark crust develops in the middle, which could bleed with a light touch. The tissue of the nodule can also look somewhat Another type of skin cancer, melanoma, is more dangerous but less common. They often resemble warts and sometimes resemble open bruises with raised, crusty edges. Learn more about basal cell carcinoma including what it looks like, its symptoms, causes, diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis at webmd. Basal cell carcinoma is common. 19.10.2021 · skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the united states. As the most common type of cancer in the world, doctors diagnose millions of people with bcc every year. Basal cell carcinoma is the most common form of skin cancer and the most frequently occurring form of all cancers.

The two most common types are basal cell cancer and squamous cell cancer skin cancer basal cell pictures. Basal cell carcinoma is the most common type of skin cancer.

The lesions tend to develop slowly and can grow into a large tumor, sometimes with central ulceration. Basal cell carcinoma is common. They usually form on the head, face, neck, hands, and arms.

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What Does Bcc Look Like

BCCs can look like open sores, red patches, pink growths, shiny bumps, scars or growths with slightly elevated, rolled edges and/or a central indentation. At times, BCCs may ooze, crust, itch or bleed. The lesions commonly arise in sun-exposed areas of the body. In patients with darker skin, about half of BCCs are pigmented .

Its important to note that BCCs can look quite different from one person to another. For more images and information on BCC signs, symptoms and early detection strategies, visit our BCC Warning Signs page.

Please note: Since not all BCCs have the same appearance, these photos serve as a general reference to what they can look like. If you see something new, changing or unusual on your skin, schedule an appointment with your dermatologist.

An open sore that does not heal

A shiny bump or nodule

A reddish patch or irritated area

A scar-like area that is flat white, yellow or waxy in color

A small pink growth with a slightly raised, rolled edge and a crusted indentation in the center

What Is The Prevalence Of Basal Cell Carcinoma In The Us

The American Cancer Society reports skin cancer as being the most common cancer in the United States, with basal cell carcinoma constituting the majority of cases. The ACS cites an estimate that about 5.4 million basal and squamous cell skin cancers are diagnosed each year in about 3.3 million persons in the US, with about 80% of those being BCCs. Although the number of these skin cancers has been increasing for years, death from them remains uncommon: non-melanoma skin cancers are estimated to cause about 2000 deaths annually, and that number has been decreasing in recent years.

The estimated lifetime risk for BCC in the white population is 33-39% for men and 23-28% for women. BCC incidence doubles every 25 years.

In states near the equator, such as Hawaii, BCC incidence is approaching three-fold that of states in the Midwest, such as Minnesota. BCC incidence also varies globally. The highest rates of skin cancer occur in South Africa and Australia, areas that receive high amounts of UV radiation. Australia has a trend toward increasing BCC incidence, while Finland has a low reported incidence that is approximately one quarter that in Minnesota BCC incidence in Finland also appears to be increasing, however, especially among young women.

BCC is the least likely cancer to metastasize. BCC differs from squamous cell carcinoma, which accounts for 16% of skin cancers and is more life-threatening.

References
  • Aldara cream 5% . Graceway Pharmaceuticals. 2007.

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