Overview of Squamous Cell Carcinoma

What is Cutaneous Squamous Cell Carcinoma?

Cutaneous Squamous Cell Carcinoma is the second most common cancer.

How is Cutaneous Squamous Cell Carcinoma diagnosed?

Squamous cell carcinoma is diagnosed with a biopsy. A biopsy is a sample of tissue that is removed from a patient. The sample is taken with a needle, scalpel, or during surgery. Next, it is tested in a lab to see if cancer cells are present.

When should I see a doctor?

You should see your doctor if you have any new or changing marks on your skin. Be aware of any lumps, growths, moles, or other abnormal areas on your skin. Watch for new spots or areas that are changing. This can include skin marks that grow larger, bleed, crust, or itch.
Early diagnosis and treatment is important to prevent the cancer from spreading. Your healthcare provider may recommend you do a skin self-exam once a month or more.

What are the risk factors for Squamous Cell Carcinoma?

The known risk factors for Squamous Cell Carcinoma include: * Exposure to UV rays. Like many other types of skin cancer, the risk of CSCC is higher in people who have been exposed to a lot of UV (ultraviolet) rays from the sun or from other sources like tanning beds. People who are treated for psoriasis with UV rays may also have a higher risk.
* Weakened immune system. People with weakened immune systems are at higher risk for this cancer. This can include people who have had an organ transplant or are receiving chronic immunosuppressive treatment for autoimmune diseases or cancer.
* Light-colored skin. People with lighter skin are at higher risk.
* Older age. People older than 50 are more likely to get this cancer.

What causes SCC

SCC is believed to be caused by damage from ultraviolet radiation (UVR) from the sun or

How is CSCC treated?

Treatment options can include surgery, radiation or medical therapy.

Following staging, treatment is often done with more than 1 method. Treatment methods include:

  1. Surgery to remove the tumor. This may include a border of healthy tissue.
  2. Radiation therapy. This therapy uses X-rays to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors. This may be used after surgery or it may be the main treatment if surgery is not an option.
  3. Medical Therapy. This treatment is done with medicines. It helps destroy cancer cells in cases where the cancer has spread to other parts of the body. An approved medication for CSCC works by stimulating the body’s immune system.

Squmaous Cell Carcinoma Specialists



David Michael Miller

Medical Oncologist and Dermatologist

Clinical And Translational Research, Advanced Skin Cancer, Data Science, R