FAQ - carcinoma, squamous cell
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what's the difference between Squamous cell carcinoma and basal cell carcinoma?

Squamous cell carcinoma is a malignant tumor of epidermal keratinocytes that invades the dermis, usually occurring in sun-exposed areas. Local destruction may be extensive, and metastases occur in advanced stages. Diagnosis is by biopsy. Treatment depends on the tumor's characteristics and may involve curettage and electrodesiccation, surgical excision, cryosurgery, or, occasionally, radiation therapy.
Squamous cell cancer spreads faster than basal cell cancer, but still may be relatively slow-growing. It can spread (metastasize) to other locations, including internal organs.
Basal cell carcinoma is a superficial slowly growing papule or nodule that derives from epidermal basal cells. Metastasis is rare, but local growth can be highly destructive. Diagnosis is by biopsy. Treatment depends on the tumor's characteristics and may involve curettage and electrodesiccation, surgical excision, cryosurgery, or, occasionally, radiation therapy.
Basal cell carcinoma starts in the top layer of the skin called the epidermis. It grows slowly and is painless. A new skin growth that bleeds easily or does not heal well may suggest basal cell carcinoma. The majority of these cancers occur on areas of skin that are regularly exposed to sunlight or other ultraviolet radiation. They may also appear on the scalp. Basal cell skin cancer used to be more common in people over age 40, but is now often diagnosed in younger people.
Basal cell skin cancer almost never spreads. But, if left untreated, it may grow into surrounding areas and nearby tissues and bone.  (+ info)

Information on Squamous cell carcinoma, Basal cell carcinoma, and Melanoma?

I need information on those three types of cancer and these are the questions I need answered about each one:

What skin layers are affected? (such as epidermis and dermis)

How is it treated? (any pills, special surgery?)

Thanks for everyones help!

All of the malignancies you have mentioned are known as skin cancers. Basal Cell carcinoma usually involves the superficial layers (epidermis) of the skin and, if caught early, the treatment is removal of the lesion at the doctor's office under local anesthesia and follow up visits to see if any other suspicious lesions show up.If subsequent lesions are found a series of radiotherapy treatments is performed. Squamous cell carcinoma also arises on the epidermis but from the squamous cells. Since these cells are located deeper it can spread to the dermis and if left untreated it can eventually erode into the fat, muscle and bone; it literally "eats" away those tissues leaving the bone exposed {that's why it's also called "rodent ulcer"}. Early treatment is the same as Basal cell {surgical excision}, or the use of a topical cream {Aldara}. Once it reaches fat and muscle, treatment consists of radiotherapy followed by intravenous chemotherapeutic medications. Melanoma is by far the deadliest of skin cancers; it arises from the melanocytes which are the pigment-producing cells. This type of skin cancer tends to quite quickly metastasize to the bones, lymphatic system and eventually to distant organs like the lungs and brain. As soon as diagnosed, the lesion{s} are excised, aggressive radio and chemotherapy is started in an effort to prevent or halt further metastases. Although the main cause of all skin cancers is exposure to UV rays from sunlight or tanning booths, they can sometimes turn up in the most unlikely of places, In March of 2007 I was diagnosed with Basal Cell Carcinoma in my vulva {I don't do nude sunbathing nor use tanning booths}. The lesion was excised after six months of my Gyno having misdiagnosed it as a genital wart and treating it as such, which only worsened the situation. In this case a medical malpractice suit is under way.  (+ info)

Is Poorly differentiated squamous cell carcinoma enough to cause death?

unfortunately yes  (+ info)

Do you think my 15 year old white female cat is suffering or in pain from squamous cell carcinoma of her ear?

She is bothered by the continuous scab, twitching her ear frequently, and sometimes scratches the scab off (raw). Is there any home-style (non-vet.) remedies besides putting her 'down'.

Animals are tough and rarely show any evidence of pain unless something is really bothering them. Of course the SCC on your cat's ear is hurting her. Why don't you at least have your vet prescribe some pain killers for your cat? Maybe your vet can give you some type numbing agent for your cat? If she is in constant pain then you need to spend some money and have a vet evaluate your pet and then do whatever the vet suggests.  (+ info)

What is the difference as far as appearance between squamous cell and basil cell carcinoma?

Both these types of skin cancer have a wide variety of appearances. The online photos available are not much help since they usually use "worst case scenario" type photos that are often much larger and uglier than the typical early skin cancer. In very simple terms a SCC usually looks like a reddish sore or scaly reddish bump that won't heal or keeps enlarging. BCC can be various colors but are often darker brown in color and sometimes mottled in appearance. This descriptive info is not really helpful to you since both types have exceptions to the norms and a variety of appearances and color tints. This is why you need a dermatologist and biopsy for a certain answer.

Since your skin cancer manifests as a sore I would guess it is more likely to be a squamous cell since early basal cells do not usually manifest as sores. You need to get a biopsy since it has been my experience that even the best dermatologists have only about a 60% correct visual guess ratio as whether a lesion is cancerous and the type of skin cancer. You will need a biopsy and a report from a pathologist before you have any more certain answer than a good guess.  (+ info)

Squamous cell carcinoma on the nose?

A spot on my nose was just diagnosed as squamous cell carcinoma and I've been referred to a physician who does Mohs. Has anyone out there had the Mohs procedure? Please share if you have had good results with a nice looking outcome. Also interested in hearing recommendations should it require plastic surgery afterwards. No horror stories please!

I had a squamous cell removed off of my cheek, and have a 1/2 inch scar that dips in just slightly. A friend of mine had one right on the bridge of her nose, she had the Mohs procedure at U.C.L.A. medical center, they also started her reconstruction at the same time, they took a graph of skin off right under her collar bone and made the graph for her nose, latter she had a filler injected there, every few years she has to have the filler pumped back up a little when it starts to sink a little, but she hardly has a scar, and looks great. Good Luck, and God bless you through this hard time!  (+ info)

moderately differentiated squamous cell carcinoma?

Hi ,
My dad has been diagonised with moderately differentiated squamous cell carcinoma of mouth.He is 63 years old and a diabetic. He seems to be healthy and normal. Is there a cure for this without surgery. Have any of ur near and dear ones have fought this disease??
Please help.
Thanks in advance,

There is no cure without surgery.  (+ info)

can someone explain squamous cell carcinoma?

My mother recently died 2 weeks after being diagnosed with squamous cell carcinoma. I had never heard of it and still dont understand how we would have known to catch it early enough. She said her pain was artharitis ie...legs, lower back and she had headaches. Thats all I know about it.

First off, very sorry about your mother's sudden passing.

Second off, the John Hopkins's Cancer Alert referred to in the answer above is a hoax and was not released by John Hopkins. Here is their denial explanation email.


You did not say where your mother's squamous cell cancer was located. Was the primary possibly located in her lungs or throat? If so this is a bad location for a SCC and she had probably had the cancer for months before her death while attributing her pain and feeling bad to her other health problems. At this time advanced SCC is not curable so at least your mother did not have to suffer long. Still this leaves you with inadequate time to prepare for her death and much unfinished business in terms of greiving. I'd suggest you read the book "How to Go On Living When Someone You Love Dies" by Therese A. Randle. It is available at Amazon or any bookstore. This book really helped me after the death of my father.

all the best in your time of grief  (+ info)

What type of treatments for squamous cell carcinoma are there?

Check the site below for cancer answers.  (+ info)

Is cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma a common malignant tumour?

Squamous cell carcinoma of the skin is common. Basal cell carcinoma is the most common skin cancer.
Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) is the second most common form of skin cancer, with over 200,000 new cases per year estimated in the United States. Most SCCs are not serious. When identified early and treated promptly, the future is bright. However, if overlooked, they are harder to treat and can cause disfigurement. While 96 to 97 percent of SCCs are localized, the small percentage of remaining cases can spread to other parts of the body, and the results can be fatal.
Good luck.  (+ info)

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