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Squamous Cell Carcinoma

(Skin cancer-Squamos Cell)

Definition

Squamous cell carcinoma is a form of skin cancer. It is the second most common form of skin cancer.
The cancer develops in the uppermost layer of skin cells. Squamous cell carcinoma usually grows slowly. It is rarely fatal if treated early. However, the cancer can be lethal if it spreads beyond the skin.
Squamous Cell Carcinoma
si55551327 97870 1 squamous cell
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Causes

Cancer occurs when cells in the body divide without control or order. Eventually these uncontrolled cells form a growth or tumor. The growths invade and take over nearby tissue. It is not clear exactly what causes these problems in the cells but it is probably a combination of genetics and the environment.

Risk Factors

Areas of skin that are damaged have a higher risk of cancer. Skin that is regularly exposed to the sun is most likely to develop skin cancer. Squamous cell carcinoma may also develop in skin that has scars, burns, or exposure to chemicals or radiation.
Factors that increase your risk of developing squamous cell carcinoma include:

Symptoms

Symptoms include:

Diagnosis

You will be asked about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done.
The skin growth will be examined. A sample of the growth will be taken and examined for cancer cells. This will help determine the stage and type of the cancer. The information will be used to guide treatment and make a prognosis.

Treatment

Talk with your doctor about the best treatment plan for you. Options include:
For people who are not able to have surgery, other treatment options include:

Prevention

To reduce your chances of getting squamous cell carcinoma, take these steps:

RESOURCES

American Academy of Dermatology http://www.aad.org

American College of Mohs Micrographic Surgery http://www.mohscollege.org

CANADIAN RESOURCES

Canadian Dermatology Association http://www.dermatology.ca

Canadian Cancer Society http://www.cancer.ca

References

Alberta Provincial Cutaneous Tumour Team. Prevention of skin cancer. Edmonton (Alberta): CancerControl Alberta; 2013 Feb. 27 p. (Clinical practice guideline; no. CU-014). Available at: http://www.guideline.gov/content.aspx?id=48130#Section420. Accessed February 25, 2015.

Jerant A, Johnson J, et al. Early detection and treatment of skin cancer. Am Fam Physician. 2000 Jul 15;62(2):357.

Saraiya M, et al. Preventing skin cancer. MMWR. 2003 Oct 17;52(RR15):1-12. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/rr5215a1.htm. Accessed February 25, 2015.

Squamous cell carcinoma. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated January 16, 2015. Accessed February 25, 2015.

Squamos cell carcinoma. American Academy of Dermatology website. Available at: http://www.aad.org/skin-conditions/dermatology-a-to-z/squamous-cell-carcinoma. Accessed February 25, 2015.

Sunscreen FAQs. American Academy of Dermatology website. Available at: https://www.aad.org/media-resources/stats-and-facts/prevention-and-care/sunscreens. Accessed February 25, 2015.

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