Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Squamous Cell Skin Cancer Evaluation

The evaluation of squamous cell carcinoma begins with a history and physical exam.

Physical findings in someone with a squamous cell carcinoma may include changes in a skin lesion:

  • Asymmetric:
    • One side of a skin lesion does not look like the other
  • Bleeding or cracking around a skin lesion
  • Irregular border around a skin lesion
  • Inconsistent coloration of a skin lesion
  • Mixed color of a skin lesion
  • Rapid change in size or shape
  • Rapid change in color, such as black
  • Size larger than 6 mm (about the size of a pencil eraser)

The diagnosis of a squamous cell carcinoma requires a skin biopsy.

Tests that may be used to evaluate a squamous cell carcinoma include:

Continue to Squamous Cell Skin Cancer Treatment

Last Updated: Jan 5, 2011 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Squamous Cell Skin Cancer References
  1. Campbell FA, Gupta G. The management of non-melanoma skin cancer. Hosp Med. 2005 May;66(5):288-93. [15920859]
  2. Clayman GL, Lee JJ, Holsinger FC, et al. Mortality risk from squamous cell skin cancer. J Clin Oncol. 2005 Feb 1;23(4):759-65. [15681519]
  3. Einspahr JG, Bowden GT, Alberts DS. Skin cancer chemoprevention: strategies to save our skin. Recent Results Cancer Res. 2003;163:151-64; discussion 264-6. [12903851]
  4. Glass AG, Hoover RN. The emerging epidemic of melanoma and squamous cell skin cancer. JAMA. 1989 Oct 20;262(15):2097-100. [2795783]
  5. Yuspa SH. The pathogenesis of squamous cell cancer: lessons learned from studies of skin carcinogenesis. J Dermatol Sci. 1998 May;17(1):1-7. [9651822]
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