Basal cell and squamous cell carcinoma

Basal Cell Carcinoma

This tumor of the skin usually appears as a small, fleshy bump or nodule on the head, neck and hands. Occasionally these nodules may appear on the trunk of the body, usually as flat growths. Basal cell carcinomas seldom occur in dark-skinned persons; they are the most common skin cancers found in Caucasians. It has been found that people who have this cancer frequently have light hair, eyes and complexions, and they don’t tan easily.

Basal cell tumors don’t spread quickly. It may take many months or years for one to reach a diameter of one half inch. Untreated, the cancer will begin to bleed, crust over, then repeat the cycle.

Although this type of cancer does not metastasize (spread to carcinomas seldom other parts of the body), it can extend below the skin to the bone and cause considerable local damage.

Squamous Cell Carcinoma

These tumors may appear as nodules or as red, scaly patches.

Squamous cell carcinoma is the second most common skin cancer found in Caucasians. It typically is found on the rim of the ear, the face, the lips and mouth. It is rarely found on dark skinned persons. This cancer will increase in size, developing in time into large masses.

Unlike Basal cell carcinoma, it can metastasize. The cure rate for both basal cell and squamous cell carcinoma is 95 percent, when properly treated.