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Date of last update: 10/21/2017.

Forum Name: Skin Cancer

Question: Four Years or More with Basal Cell Carcinoma Lesion

 kswife - Sat Oct 27, 2007 12:04 pm

My 42-year-old husband's new doctor informed him yesterday that biopsy results have indicated that a lesion on his cheek is basal cell carcinoma. The doctor is going to refer him to a dermatologist for removal of the lesion.

I am writing because my husband has had this lesion for at least four years, and though he's been told that basal cell carcinoma very rarely metastasizes, I'm worried that the cancer may have spread, given the length of time my husband has lived with it.

Is additional testing warranted in this case, or will the excision suffice?
 kswife - Tue Oct 30, 2007 7:04 am

I've gone back and looked through our photo albums at photos of my husband, and realize now that he has had that lesion for at least five and a half, maybe six years or more.
 teacup - Wed Jan 28, 2009 2:21 pm

Reading your post I had to reply. I am not a doctor, but I do have a mother that has something on her cheek as well, and she had melanoma in the past. is basel cell carcinoma a form of melanoma? and could you tell me some of the characteristics of what your husband has? My mom is crazy and thinks Jesus put this on her face, so I can't get her medical help. I am searching to find out what she has, and i suspect cancer. She has had it for some time and I always wondered if it was cancer why hasnt she died yet?
 miss mandy - Wed Mar 11, 2009 10:45 am

I am in the same situation.

I had a red mark where the footprints of my glasses were. It seemed as though it was there forever.

It eventually became a bump but I thought it was from the glasses and did not seek medical advice until a year later.

That was 4 years ago. The dermatologist's nurse tech removed the lump, sent it for biopsy and then did a procedure in the office using scraping and heat.

I asked the dermatologist if I can go for Mohs and he said I didn't need it.

Six months ago I noticed a small red area on the suture line. It was positive for basal cell and I had Mohs surgery-which was a wonderful experience.

Every doctor seems to negate the possibility of metastasis but I am very, very worried.

I recently went to the doctor for a cough when I speak which has had a 11 week duration, so far.

He took blood tests and my liver enzymes are slightly elevated and amylase is 160 and I was told norm is 130.

I had an abdominal ultrascan which showed nothing except a cyst on the liver.

My doctor wants to wait 10 days before he retests my blood and takes further action.

However, every medical pro thinks basal cell does not metastasize which is contrary to what I have been reading.

I am very nervous
 Dr.M.Aroon kamath - Fri Nov 06, 2009 10:09 am

User avatar Hi kswife,
Basal cell carcinomas can be very slow growing tumors.There are sub-types which also differ in their aggressiveness.
Usually, these are slow growing, 'locally' invasive malignant tumors but rarely metastasize.

The incidence of distant metastatic basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is very rare— 0.003% to 0.5% of the population.

Large, neglected, ulcerated, locally invasive and uncontrolled tumors are most prone to metastasize . Metastases usually occur after multiple local recurrences. Therefore,it is mandatory to treat BCC promptly and adequately and to have regular followups to avoid the risk of metastasis to regional lymph nodes or distant sites(The lymph nodes, lung, bone, skin, spleen, and brain are sites of metastasis).

If excision (preferably Mohs') is successful, then perhaps, one only needs to be follow up regularly and carefully.
Best wishes!

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