Symptoms of Skin Cancer

Each year, thousands of people find irregular spots, bumps, or sores that do not heal on their skin. Often, these skin changes have been growing unobserved for years. Some may be malignant. Learn More ›

What is Basal Cell Carcinoma

Basal cell cancer is the most common form of skin cancer diagnosed in the United States.

Basal cells are small, round skin cells normally found in the upper part of your skin. When these cells become cancerous, they grow out of control. Basal cell tumors rarely spread or cause death. But cancerous basal cells usually turn into small skin tumors that can destroy skin and nearby tissues. They can grow large over time, causing damage around and under them.

Basal cell cancer can grow on any part of the body. However, most basal cell cancers are found on some part of the face. This can cause disfigurement, and can interfere with the function of the eyelids, nose, and mouth.

Learn more about basal cell carcinoma

Test Your Melanoma Knowledge

Do you know that melanoma is the most serious form of skin cancer?

Squamous Cell Carcinoma of the Skin

Squamous cells are small, flat skin cells in the outer layer of skin. When these cells become cancerous, they typically develop into flat or raised, rounded skin tumors. Sometimes the skin around the tumors gets red and swollen.

Most cases of squamous cell carcinoma occur in people who have spent lots of time in the sun—especially those with fair skin and blue eyes. Some cases develop on skin that has been injured or exposed to cancer-causing agents. This type of squamous cell cancer can develop on:

  • Scars, burns, and long-lasting ulcers

  • The legs and body of workers exposed to poisons, harsh chemicals, and agents like tar and soot

  • Skin affected by genital warts

  • Red patches of skin covered with white scales, a condition called psoriasis, treated with certain therapies.

Learn more about squamous cell carcinoma of the skin

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