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FAQ Frequently asked questions
What is squamous cell carcinoma?
Squamous cell carcinomas is a type of skin cancer that originates in the squamous cells, which form the outer layer of the top layer of skin (epidermis).
What are the signs and symptoms of squamous cell carcinoma?
Sometimes squamous cell carcinoma begins as a pre-cancerous growth called an actinic keratosis, which is visible as small, pink, itchy, scaly patches. Squamous cell carcinoma appears as a flat reddish patch that grows slowly, or a …
What causes squamous cell carcinoma?
Squamous cell carcinoma is caused by damage to the DNA of squamous cells that causes them to replicate uncontrollably. For squamous cell carcinoma of the skin, the cellular damage is caused by UV radiation, which can come from sunlight, but also …
Who gets squamous cell carcinoma?
People at greatest risk of developing squamous cell carcinoma include those who have been sunburnt, who have accumulated long-term exposure to the sun (for instance by working outdoors), people who sunbathe or use tanning beds, people with a family history …
How is squamous cell carcinoma diagnosed?
A pathologist will diagnose squamous cell carcinoma by examining a sample of the affected skin.
How is squamous cell carcinoma treated?
Squamous cell carcinoma is treated using a combination of surgery, cryosurgery, radiation therapy, biologic and retinoid therapy and chemotherapy.
Can squamous cell carcinoma be cured?
The prognosis for squamous cell carcinoma varies according to the stage of the cancer. If the disease is detected before it has had time to spread throughout the body, the prognosis is usually good.
What are the chances of squamous cell carcinoma returning?
Squamous cell carcinoma can return after treatment. If it does, recurrence usually occurs in the first two years after surgery.
About this article
Author: Jonathan Meddings BMedLabSc (Hons)
First answered: 22 Sep 2014
Last reviewed: 19 May 2018
Rating: 4.9 out of 5
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Category: Squamous cell carcinoma