FAQ - carcinoma, 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 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)

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)

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)

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?

  (+ info)

Life expectancy for Basal Cell Carcinoma?

For a science project i have to make a 9 slide power point presentation on a type of cancer. I chose Basal Cell Carcinoma, a type of skin cancer, for my project. I need to know the life expectancy of patients with BCC.

BCC is not a life threatening cancer. It doesn't metastasize, therefore will not spread into organs like other cancers. So the life expectancy is normal lifespan.

Lol, well I'm 99% correct!

My mom had a couple spots removed and has a couple more; she's 76 yrs old and never tanned.

Rates of metastasis for BCC have been estimated at 0.1%.

Average age: 85
Average refusal of treatments:40%
One documented death from tumor of bcc on spine for 15 years, Patient refused treatments. When it got so bad, as to have to be treated, he died of sepsis, not bcc. He was 53 yrs old.  (+ info)

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)

Is there a way to easily detect basal cell carcinoma early?

Basal cell carcinoma is non-life threatening, but can be disfiguring if not treated in a timely way. I was wondering if there are ways to detect basal cell carcinoma early enough so that surgery can be minimally invasive.

the best way for early detection of any skin cancer is routine visits to your dermatologist. by routine i mean if youre at risk you should go in shorter time frames, if at low risk go at farther times. the doc will examine your skin at every visit and make notes of the location size and shape of exhisting moles and monitor them and the rest of you for any chenges.  (+ info)

Body massage advised or not when Basal Cell Carcinoma diagnosed?

I was advised to check with my doctor if body massage is recommended after being diagnosed with BCC, although I was already treated, and the BCC was eliminated. The doctor said that it is OK to get the massage. Has anyone experienced something similar?
A response will be appreciated.

BCC is a localized cancer and once they are removed there is no risk at all to having a massage. BCC do not spread into the lymph nodes so this is another reason there is no risk in getting a massage. Enjoy your massage.  (+ info)

What are the primary and other risk factors that may or may not be related to basal cell carcinoma?

This is for my Anatomy class and is a clinical case study. I ask.com'd it but that none of the sites really helped me on determining the primary and other risk factors.

Basal Cell Carcinoma Risk Factors

Some common risk factors for basal cell carcinoma include:

Chronic sun exposure mainly to UVB radiation but also UVA
A history of repeated sunburns or childhood exposure to the sun
A suppressed immune system
HIV disease
Ionizing radiation used for acne in the 1940's
Fair skin and the propensity to freckle or burn rather than tan

Some rare risk factors for basal cell carcinoma include:

Exposure to arsenic
A condition called granuloma inguinale
Scarred or previously damaged skin, especially radiation damage
Rare genetic diseases such as xeroderma pigmentosa, nevoid basal cell carcinoma syndrome, and albinism  (+ info)

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