Non-melanoma skin cancers are malignant skin tumours that are not classified as melanomas.
This name encompasses two types of tumours:
Squamous cell carcinoma is a malignant proliferation of keratinocytes, a type of skin cell. It is a tumour with the capacity to metastasise, especially at the lymph node level, but this is rare and only occurs in very advanced cases. It usually presents as a squamous tumour that grows quite rapidly, easily reaching a size of more than 1 cm in the course of a few weeks.
It is a very common tumour, although it is less common than basal cell carcinoma. It accounts for 20-25% of malignant skin tumours. In the last 20 years, the incidence has increased in almost all countries due to increased exposure to sunlight and changes in clothing style.
Basal cell carcinoma arises from the lowest layer of the epidermis, the basal cells. It is particularly prevalent in Caucasian white people. The incidence is increasing by 10% per year. It cannot metastasise, although it can be locally invasive due to its slow but progressive growth.
The IVO is a reference centre for the treatment of basal cell carcinomas using Mohs micrographic surgery, the best treatment for basal cell carcinomas that have been treated previously and have reappeared, or those located in high-risk areas such as those close to important structures: eyes, nose, ears, etc.
The IVO dermatology service is an expert in performing Mohs surgery and its variants.
A clinical trial is a research study carried out on people with the aim of learning more about how the body reacts to certain treatments. These trials generally seek to find drugs that are more effective than the current best therapeutic option for patients, or that have similar efficacy but a better toxicity profile.
Bearing in mind that almost all currently available treatments are the result of clinical research, the importance of clinical trials is obvious.
The IVO has a clinical trials unit for all types of tumours and participates in phase 1-3 studies as well as other types of studies.
Whether you receive the news of an initial diagnosis of cancer or a relapse, coping with cancer can be emotionally overwhelming. Each person has their own way of coping with a non-melanoma skin cancer diagnosis, but there are some recommendations that can help you through this process: