Fast Five Quiz: Melanoma and Other Skin Cancers

William James, MD


July 01, 2021

Patients presenting with BCCs often report a slowly enlarging lesion that does not heal and that bleeds when traumatized. Tumors most commonly occur on the head and neck (70%-80% of cases), followed by the trunk (about 25% of cases). Patients often give a history of a bump that occasionally bleeds. BCCs may have one or more visible and irregular blood vessels, an ulcerative area in the center, and black-blue or brown areas within them. Large BCCs may have oozing or crusted areas. The lesion grows slowly and is rarely painful.

Characteristic features of BCC tumors include the following:

  • Waxy papules with central depression

  • Pearly appearance

  • Erosion or ulceration, often central

  • Bleeding, especially when traumatized

  • Crusting

  • Rolled (raised) border

  • Translucency

  • Telangiectases over the surface

  • Slow growing (0.5 cm in 1-2 y)

Review clinical images of nonmelanoma skin cancers.


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