Basal cell carcinoma: Overview
Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is the most common type of skin cancer. It’s also the most commonly diagnosed cancer in the United States. Every year, millions of people learn that they have BCC.
This skin cancer usually develops on skin that gets sun exposure, such as on the head, neck, and back of the hands. BCC is especially common on the face, often forming on the nose. It is possible to get BCC on any part of the body, including the trunk, legs, and arms.
People who use tanning beds have a much higher risk of getting BCC. They also tend to get BCC earlier in life.
This type of skin cancer grows slowly. It rarely spreads to other parts of the body. Treatment is important because BCC can grow wide and deep, destroying skin tissue and bone.
Photograph used with permission of the American Academy of Dermatology National Library of Dermatologic Teaching Slides.
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