Basal cell carcinoma is the most common form of skin cancer worldwide and is the most common skin cancer in Caucasians, Hispanics, and Asians. The incidence of basal cell carcinoma is increasing.
This may be due to people spending more time in the sun or that the decrease in the ozone layer is allowing more UV radiation from the sun to reach the earth’s surface.
Basal cell carcinomas appear most often on sun-exposed areas of the skin, with 85% appearing in the head and neck region. However, basal cell carcinomas can appear on sun-protected sites such as the groin and breasts. Most commonly a basal cell carcinoma will present as a sore or pimple that crusts, bleeds, will not heal, or heals but then recurs.
Not all basal cells look alike; some may look like a scar, cyst, or a pink, scaly patch on the skin. Although basal cell carcinomas do not metastasize, they spread locally by direct extension and are destructive to the surrounding and underlying tissue. For this reason, basal cell carcinomas should be treated promptly by a dermatologist.