The clinical types of BCC
There are different types of BCC requiring different treatments. The broad category of BCC may be established clinically prior to excision. However, the pathology report is required to identify any concerning features and to confirm the BCC subtype.
Let’s describe the two main types of BCC:
- Nodular BCC is raised, shiny, may be pigmented & usually occurs on the face. Nodular BCC needs to be surgically removed.
- Superficial BCC is flat, pink, & is most commonly found on the trunk or limbs. Superficial BCC may be treated with skin cancer cream.
Now let’s look at all the main types of BCC in more detail.
Superficial BCC accounts for around 30% of Basal Cell Carcinoma. The condition tends to occur in a younger age group than those affected by other BCC types. Genes play an important role in the development of superficial BCC.
Superficial BCC appears as a pink or red flat lesion with well defined borders. Look for a subtly elevated and/or pearly edge that is best seen on stretching the skin. The lesion may be slightly shiny and/or scaly. Superficial BCC may look similar to an IEC (Bowens disease). A dermatoscope will certainly help distinguish the two with at least 90% accuracy.
Superficial BCC may be treated non-surgically. The most common non-surgical treatment is with Imiquimod (®Aldara) cream.