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Clinical, Dermoscopic, and Histopathologic Features of Non-Melanoma Skin Cancers

By: Kayci Reyer
Posted: Monday, November 30, 2020

According to research published in the Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology, there may be a correlation among the clinical, dermoscopic, and histopathologic features of non-melanoma skin cancer. Iris Zalaudek, MD, of the University of Trieste, Italy, and colleagues analyzed patients with basal cell carcinoma or cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma for whom tumors were located on the face and/or scalp.

The retrospective study included 100 consecutive patients who had been treated at the Non-Melanoma Skin Cancer Unit of the Dermatological Clinic of Trieste between March 2018 and March 2019. Half the patients had a diagnosis of basal cell carcinoma, and half had a diagnosis of cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma. To categorize common tumor locations, 16 anatomic regions of the face and scalp were delineated, comprising 5 macroareas: frontonasal, scalp around the back of the head, periauricular, periorbital, and perioral. For each patient, clinical data, including the site, diameter, dermoscopic characteristics, and histologic subtype of the lesion, were collected and evaluated.

Identifying characteristics of both basal cell and cutaneous squamous cell carcinomas were noted. Basal cell carcinoma was associated with “arborizing vessels” (nodular), “superficial fine short telangiectasias” (superficial), and “shiny white-red structureless areas” (sclerodermiform), whereas “coils” and “looped-hairpin vessels” were observed more frequently in moderately differentiated cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma. Nodular basal cell carcinoma was found to occur frequently in the frontonasal area, whereas sclerosis from basal cell carcinoma was more prominent in the periauricular area. A total of 34% of basal cell carcinomas were found to be pigmented, possibly a result of the exclusion of some nonpigmented basal cell carcinomas from the study due to the absence of surgical treatment.

Disclosure: The study authors reported no conflicts of interest.



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