FAQ - Neoplasms, Basal Cell
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Why is basal cell carcinoma the least invasive of all cancers?

Basal Cell Carcinoma (BCC) can develop into large unsightly skin tumors but the cells rarely metasize or spread to distant sites like malignant melanoma, lung cancer, colon cancer etc.
Is it that only certain genes are involved in BCC which mean they fail to become completely immature like other tumor cells, or is it they are more liable to be attacked by the immune system? Any other ideas?

Simon - Great question! Sorry that the answer is not yet known. Most cancer research efforts have been directed towards the malignant tumors which rapidly invade the blood vessels and lymph channels making their spread easily, but not malignant basal cells of basal cell carcinoma (BCC). It may be genetic, as you mention, or the BCC cells may lack certain genes and/or enzymes which would allow the cells to survive in other body locations. It is NOT likely to be related to the immune system as microscopic examination of BCC lesions do not show the tissue changes of immune-type cells adjacent to or invading the BCC as they do with other tumors. Hence, the BCC spreads by ever-widening direct growth from the primary tumor without metastases but able to invade the toughest of nearby tissues, even bone. Might you be interested in such a research career in dermatopathology?  (+ info)

What is considered too low a range for basal cell temperature? Is it always a sign of hypothyroidism?

I've been doing bbt tracking, and I've noticed that my highest basal cell temperature in the morning was 36.8F. It's most often between 36.1-36.5.
I believe I've had a thyroid test, and it was normal. I first realised my body temperature might too low when I was using a fertility chart and had to change the range since my waking temperature has never even reached 37 degrees C. I sleep pretty normally, and usually wake up naturally around the same time every day.
The thing is, I don't tend to feel cold, and although I weigh more than I did when I was younger and can't seem to lose it, I'm still pretty slim. I do have some symptoms that appear to be consistent with hypothyroidism, but some are not. For example, I don't have any throat problems and I rarely ever feel cold even with a low body temperature.
Is it within a normal range, or are can it be a symptom of something besides thyroid disorders?

You can be hypothyroidic (sp?) for years before it manifests itself. My best advice is to have your doctor do thyroid testing of the blood to make sureyour levels are all right. The number should be near 5. When my hypothroidism was diagnosed, I was having headaches and insomnia. It may be that your levels are fluctuating, or that it is off. If there is a history of it in your family, you have probably some sort of thyroid disorder which can be easily helped by a small dose of medicine. You should definitely see your doctor. As far as basal cell tempuratures being, I am not sure what you mean, the problem will be shown for thyroid in the blood. Good luck.  (+ info)

Can I have a basal cell carcinoma on my foot?

Has this happened to anyone, what I thought was a wart is infact a basal cell carcinoma. How was it treated if this happened to you. Thanks.

Skin cancer is a major problem in the elderly. Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), the second most common skin cancer, typically occurs in this age group. Despite a number of modalities readily available for treatment. Consequently, the search for novel treatments continues. To my knowledge, there are only 6 published reports of invasive SCC treated with 5-percent Imiquimod cream. (Imiquimod is a topically applied imidazoquiline immunomodulator that enhances both innate and cell-mediated immunity )
This is a clinical trial result that has details that may be of interest:- An 89-year-old woman presented with three lesions on her lower limbs. She had previous treatments for multiple basal cell carcinomas, actinic keratoses, Bowen disease, and invasive SCCs at various sites. The new lesions were on the left foot (one) and right lower leg (two) and all showed changes of poorly differentiated SCC histologically. She declined surgical excision; radiotherapy was felt to be a poor option. She was treated with 5-percent imiquimod cream, initially to just the lesion on the dorsum of the foot, for 8-12 hours at night for three nights each week (three times a week). Treatment was well tolerated by week 2, so the frequency was increased to five times a week, and all three lesions treated. Gradually, two lesions diminished in size. Treatment was continued until there was no clinical evidence of residual tumor at these sites (19 weeks) repeat biopsies showed only a focus of dysplastic cells with no invasion (dorsum, left foot), and epidermal hyperplasia with no significant cytological atypia (outer aspect, right lower leg) Neither now showed evidence of invasive SCC. After 16 months there was no recurrence of either lesion. The third lesion (right lower leg,) did not respond to topical imiquimod and was later surgically excised.
Hope this helps
Matador 89  (+ info)

What are some treatments for Basal Cell Carcinoma?

I think i have Basal Cell Carcinoma, And I'm going to the clinic Thursday, and i was wondering what i have to look forward to.. Like what they'll do to treat it.

Basal Cell Carcinoma is a type of skin cancer. It is typically a very slow growing, non-invasive cancer and is treated very effectivly by excision. If the doctor believes the lesion to be suspicious of BCC, they will likely schedule a biopsy to confirm this, and then completely remove it by cutting it out and placing a couple of stiches on the wound.  (+ info)

Am I at a higher risk for melanoma because I had basal cell skin cancer?

I had a spot removed a couple years ago from my face which was basal cell cancer. It was most likely from all of the sun and tanning beds in the past. Am I at a higher risk for melanoma?

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Basal cell carcinoma surgery and skin graft - anyone else had the same?

I've had a full thickness skin graft for a basal cell carcinoma on my left temple on my face, but after 3 months, my wound site where the cancer was (not the skin graft site) is still painful. Anyone else had this?

I had a basal cell carcinoma on my nose removed April 3rd 1991.
Now its beginning to peel. I've made arrangement to see a skin specialist.
I would suggest you do the same. It can be very painful. The likelihood of the cancer coming back, while still in the back of our minds, is minimal at best, its still there and very real, and very scary. Go see your DR. its important. And refrain from being in the sun. Your to important/special to not go see about it.  (+ info)

My basal cell skin spot disappeared months after biopsy? Do I still need it removed?

I dont' know if I called it right as basal cell, but its one of those precancer spots. I had a biopsy was tested positive, I'm supposed to have surgery to have it removed, but now I can't see anything. Why would this be and if it's not there, why cut it open to remove something you can't see?

If the biopsy indicated a precancer, then I would imagine that the biopsy removed the majority of the problem (but probably not all of it). The tendency of those lesions is to be shaped like an iceberg; that is, there may be more cells outside the obvious area. If it's not clinically apparent, perhaps you can get rid of it chemically, rather than having "blind surgery". There are a couple of creams that you can apply to the area that will find the hidden cancer cells, and keep you from going thru a scarring surgery. You might want to see if your dermatologist will prescribe either 5-FU or Aldara.  (+ info)

how long can you have a basal cell skin cancer on your face without knowing it?

whats the longest people have gone with basal cell skin cancer on their face before treating it?

It can be present a long time (years) while you dismiss it as a nuisance. I have seen patients ignore them for a decade, and come in with a giant mass, a neglected mess.

These are easily cured when early. See your surgeon or dermatologist.  (+ info)

A few months ago I got my Basal Cell Carcinoma removed and it has been stinging. Is that normal?

A few months I was told that I had Basal Cell Carcinoma and went down to the doctors and they removed it by cutting out the cancer spot. It was between the size of a eraser head and a dime. It has been stinging a lot lately and feels extra sensitive. I don't know if that is normal or not. Does anyone know what it should feel like as time goes on?

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What are the symptoms of a basal cell carcinoma?

Is it possible that you could have one for a year without any change in size?

Also how likely is it that someone in their early 20's could get one. (i.e. does it require excessive sun exposure?)

I am looking at google, but I would also like some input from you people.

The risk of skin cancer is related to the amount of sun exposure and pigmentation in the skin. The longer the exposure to the sun and the lighter the skin, the greater the risk of skin cancer. It occurs most frequently in people over 45 years of age, and almost twice as often in men as in women, but if you're in the sun very often with little or no protection, it is possible for you to get skin cancer even in your early 20's.

Symptoms of Basal Cell Carcinoma:

-The five most typical characteristics of basal cell carcinoma are quite different from each other. Frequently, two or more features are present in one tumor. In addition, basal cell carcinoma sometimes resembles non-cancerous skin conditions, such as psoriasis or eczema. Only a trained physician, usually a dermatologist, can diagnose this cancer.
It is advisable to learn the signs of basal cell carcinoma and examine the body regularly, as often as once a month, if at high risk. A full-length mirror and a hand-held mirror can be very useful for the less visible parts of the body. The five warning signs of basal cell carcinoma are:

-An open sore that bleeds, oozes or crusts, and remains open for three or more weeks. A persistent, non-healing sore is a very common early manifestation.
-A reddish patch or an irritated area, frequently occurring on the chest, shoulders, arms or legs. Sometimes the patch crusts. It may also itch or hurt. At other times, it persists with no noticeable discomfort.
-A smooth growth with an elevated, rolled border and an indentation in the center. As the growth slowly enlarges, tiny blood vessels may develop on the surface.
-A shiny bump (or nodule) that is pearly or translucent and is often pink, red or white. The bump can also be tan, black or brown, especially in dark-haired people, and can be confused with a mole.
-A scar-like area (white, yellow, or waxy in appearance) which often has poorly defined borders. The skin itself appears shiny or taut. -Although a less frequent sign, it can indicate the presence of an aggressive tumor.

http://www.healthscout.com/ency/1/199/main.html  (+ info)

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