Basal Cell Carcinoma

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Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is the commonest of the skin cancers. It behaves locally as a true malignancy, growing and destroying all tissues in its path. However, it rarely spreads to distant organs through "metastasis."

The presentation of BCC is quite varied. It most commonly presents as a persistant, firm, "pearly" nodule in the skin, and may crust and bleed periodically. This nodular form may grow fast enough to ulcerate at its center, producing what physicians call, "nodulo-ulcerative" BCC.

This is a typical "nodular" BCC on the upper lip.


This is a "nodulo-ulcerative" BCC of the chin.


Other presentations of BCC include:

"Superficial" BCC- a flat, reddish patch with little of no elevation from surrounding skin
"Pigmented" BCC- a pigmented plaque which may be confused with a mole or melanoma
"Morphea-form" BCC- a flat, firm, unobtrusive plaque in the skin

A "superficial" BCC covering a large area of the back.


A "pigmented" BCC of the cheek.


A "morphea-form" BCC seen up close.

Treatment options for BCC

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