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What Is Basal Cell Carcinoma Skin Cancer?

May 5, 2008
A basal cell carcinoma skin cancer is the result of sun damage to the skin. The cancer tends to enlarge in a slow and steady pattern. It has the capability to spread to the tissue nearby. However, it cannot spread to the distant part of the body.

The best and the only way to detect this cancer is to go for a biopsy. The procedure involves removal of a small piece of the skin and letting a pathologist analyze it under the microscope in a medical laboratory.

The process does not work towards removing the cancer. It only takes off at the top just like the tip of an ice berg. Sometimes, the skin works towards healing once the biopsy is done as it starts growing over the cancer.

Now, this does not indicate that the cancer is gone. It just means that the cancer is covered with a layer of skin. In case, the cancer is not eliminated completely, it can get deep in to the skin and results in greater harm.

Basal cell carcinoma skin cancer is the most common type of cancer existing in the world. This cancer can be quite destructive and even disfiguring. It consists of the risk of developing serious skin problems.

People with family history of basal cell carcinoma skin cancer are more vulnerable to developing this disease. Also people who have exposed themselves to sunlight or exposed to carcinogenic chemicals such as arsenic are at greater risk of developing this disease.

The treatment of this dangerous disease is either via surgery, topical chemotherapy, cryosurgery, or photodynamic therapy. The disease is not life threatening. However, if left untreated, the disease can disfigure the skin, results in bleeding and even result in local destruction in areas such as eye, ear, nose and lip.

There are several types of basal cell carcinoma skin cancer as mentioned below:

a) Nodular

This appears as flesh colored papule with telangiectasis. In case, it becomes ulcerates, it
results in 'rodent ulcer'. It is an ulcerating nodule with a pearly border.

b) Cystic

This is a rare type of basal cell carcinoma skin cancer and very difficult to distinguish from the nodular type. It has a cavity in the centre with fluid.

c) Pigmented

This is another variant of the nodular type of basal cell carcinoma skin cancer. This should not confuse with melanoma.

d) Sclerosing

It is a scar like lesion.

e) Superficial

This type of basal cell carcinoma skin cancer appears as a red scaling patch.

Basal cell carcinoma skin cancer may look different from normal skin. It may also appear as skin bump or a growth that looks pearly, waxy, white, light pink, flesh colored, brown or even flat.

Here are some symptoms of basal cell carcinoma skin cancer:

* A skin sore that may bleed easily
* A sore that does not heal properly
* Sore with crusting or oozing spots
* Sore just like a scar without an injured area.
* Irregular blood vessels around the spot

- Rush to a skin doctor as soon as you observe some of the above symptoms.
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