Basal cell carcinoma is one of the most predominant types of skin cancer. It presents as a painless disorder of the skin. The affected area of the skin is usually raised, and shiny with tiny blood vessels over it. This might also present as a skin ulcer. This disease is a slow and progressive and has the ability to damage the surrounding tissues. However, basal cell carcinoma doesn’t have the ability to migrate to distant parts of the body or result in death. There are some factors that increase the chances of developing this disease. Some of these factors include ultraviolet rays, people with lighter skin, prolonged exposure to chemicals such as arsenic, and a weak or poor immune system. Another growing factor that could increase the chances of developing this disease is tanning beds. These are beds, that people utilize to achieve a darker skin tone. This disease can be diagnosed through different means. Some of these include by physical examination and also confirming the diagnosis by performing a tissue biopsy of the affected region. Some of the ways of preventing and protecting yourself against this disease are by making use of sunscreen. This acts as a protection of the skin against excess ultraviolet rays. The methods of treatment of basal cell carcinoma include the application of cold, topical chemotherapy, laser surgery and so on. Targeted therapy and chemotherapy have also proved effective, especially on rare occasions where the disease has spread to distant parts of the body.

What Are the Causes Of Basal Cell Carcinoma?

As earlier mentioned, basal cell carcinoma is caused by the excessive exposure to ultraviolet radiations from the sun. It could also be as a result of the prolonged use of tanning bed. When the skin is exposed to high dose of ultraviolet rays for a long period of time, this might cause some alterations in the DNA of the skin cells. This might lead to the development of cancer over a period of time. Although, this process might take a long number of years before it occurs.

What Are the Symptoms Of Basal Cell Carcinoma?

Patients affected with basal cell carcinoma do present with a shiny, pearly skin nodule. It’s possible to also notice a skin growth, that has a dome shape and that has blood vessels running over it. This might present as pink, brown or black color. Another symptom of this disease is a waxy, hard skin growth.

What Is Squamous Cell Carcinoma?

This is one of the most common causes of skin cancer. It usually develops in the squamous cells of the outer and middle layer of the skin. It mostly occurs in parts of the skin that has been injured by Ultra-violet rays. Avoiding a prolonged exposure to Ultra-violet rays helps to decrease the risk of having squamous cell carcinoma.  Areas commonly exposed to the sun include the neck, arms, legs head, hands and so on. This disease is a progressive type of cancer, that grows slowly over time. It also has the ability to spread to other tissues of the body. Common areas affected are the bones, tissues, and surrounding lymph nodes. There are some factors that increase the chances of developing this disease. Some of the factors include old age, gender, type of skin, exposure to sunlight and so on. This cancer becomes difficult to treat when it starts metastasizing. The prognosis of the disease is always better when diagnosed early.

What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Squamous Cell Carcinoma?

This disease usually starts as a bump on the skin. This bump could be red in color, and patchy when touched. They also bleed when scraped or touched. Some of the symptoms of the disease are;

  1. A red ulcer or plaque that grows slowly.
  2. The lesion caused by this cancer is sometimes asymptomatic
  3. Regular bleeding from a tumour, especially when scraped.
  4. The ulcer usually has rough edges, with hard lesions.
  5. The tumour might appear in the form of a hard plaque, but with vessels.
  6. The tumour sometimes can be found just below the skin, which would eventually ulcerate and invade the surrounding tissues.
  7. This tumour mostly develops in the areas that are exposed to the sun, such s the neck, hands, arms, head, and so on.
  8. It often forms an ulcer on the lip that doesn’t heal and then bleeds regularly.

What Are The Causes Of Squamous Cell Carcinoma?

Squamous cell carcinoma affects areas of the skin that is exposed to the sun for a prolonged period. Some of the conditions that increase the risk of developing this disease are exposed to sunlight and immunosuppression. These two factors contribute the most to the risk of having the disease. The risk of metastasis begins to increase ten years after the diagnosis of the disease. A large fraction of the squamous cell carcinoma affects the skin, such as the neck, hands, arm, and face. The squamous cell carcinoma has a huge risk of metastasis as compared to basal cell carcinoma

  1. Immunosuppression: This occurs mostly in people that had just received organ transplants. This is because, this kind of people are given drugs that would suppress their immune system, to prevent cases of rejection. This increases their risk of having squamous cell carcinoma. Those most affected by this disease are patients that had undergone heart and lung transplants, because of the high dosage of immunosuppressive medications they usually take.

Is Squamous Cell Carcinoma More Common than Basal Cell Carcinoma?

Basal cell carcinoma is the most common skin disorder in the world, followed by squamous cell carcinoma. According to statistics, basal cell carcinoma is responsible for about 80% of skin disorders.

Which is Worse Basal Cell Carcinoma or Squamous Cell Carcinoma?

Squamous cell carcinomas tend to grow deep into the skin, and also spread to different parts of the body, unlike basal cell carcinoma. This makes squamous celll carcinoma more dangerous.

Dermatologist near me

It’s important to visit a dermatologist when you notice an abnormal growth on your skin, for the right examination and diagnosis.

References

Chandrakesan, P. (2017). Cancer cell of origin controls epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition in skin squamous cell carcinoma. Stem Cell Investigation, 4, pp.34-34.

Curry, J. and Wojcik, E. (2003). Malignant pericardial effusion with metastatic squamous-cell carcinoma: Discordance between ThinPrep® and cell-block cytopreparation. Diagnostic Cytopathology, 29(5), pp.270-270.

Geurts, T. (2005). Pulmonary Squamous Cell Carcinoma following Head and Neck Squamous Cell Carcinoma: Metastasis or Second Primary?. Clinical Cancer Research, 11(18), pp.6608-6614.

Gilger, B. (2011). Challenges in the treatment of equine periocular squamous cell carcinoma. Equine Veterinary Education, 23(10), pp.500-501