Squamous Cell Carcinoma

Squamous cell carcinoma accounts for about one in five skin cancers and together with basal cell carcinoma causes ninety percent of all cancers. This cancer originates in the upper part of the epidermis. The risk of developing squamous cell carcinoma increases with years of prolonged sun exposure, especially sun burns and fair skin color.


Squamous cell carcinoma develops gradually in sun exposed areas such as the rim of the ear, lower lip, face, bald scalp, neck, hands, arms, and legs. They appear raised, rough, scaly, and crusted. If left untreated, the cancer will grow locally and can invade lymph nodes and even distant organs.


In the vast majority of cases complete excision is the treatment. There is low risk of recurrence even after complete excision. The risk of developing another skin cancer in the future is increased once someone has had squamous cell carcinoma.


For prevention, reduce UV light exposure:

Apply sunscreen 30SPF or greater.

Wear a wide brimmed hat and sun protective clothing.

Avoid sun peak hours 10am – 4pm.

Do not use tanning booths.


Squamous Cell Carcinoma Samples

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