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Basal Cell Carcinoma

Find industry-leading basal cell carcinoma treatment at Cumberland Skin.

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Basal Cell Carcinoma

Find industry-leading basal cell carcinoma treatment at Cumberland Skin.


Basal Cell Carcinoma

Have you noticed a shiny, pearly-looking bump on your skin? Or a sore that refuses to heal? These are warning signs of basal cell carcinoma, otherwise known as the most common skin cancer diagnosed in the United States.

Every year, more than three million people in America are diagnosed with basal cell carcinoma (BCC), which is why it is important to learn as much as you can about it so you better understand how to identify and treat BCC, as well as reduce your risk of developing this skin cancer.

Explore our basal cell carcinoma guide below and when you are ready, contact us to schedule your skin cancer screening or basal cell carcinoma treatment in Lebanon, Tennessee.


What is Basal Cell Carcinoma?

Basal cell carcinoma is a type of non-melanoma skin cancer that develops in basal cells, which are located in the epidermis (topmost layer of skin). When basal cells begin to replicate out of control due to DNA mutations caused by cell damage, cancerous tumors and lesions develop (referred to as carcinomas).

In most cases, basal cell carcinomas develop on skin that has been exposed to ultraviolet (UV) radiation, such as the face, ears, forearms, hands, and lips. This is because basal cell carcinoma is thought to be caused by UV rays, either from the sun or tanning beds. Excessive exposure damages skin cells, which increases your risk of the cell mutations that lead to cancer.


Basal Cell Carcinoma FAQs

With basal cell carcinoma being the most common skin cancer in the United States, you likely have several questions and concerns about it. Read through our comprehensive FAQs section below to learn more about the warning signs of basal cell carcinoma, how fast this skin cancer spreads, the survival rate for BCC, and our basal cell carcinoma treatments at Cumberland Skin.

Basal cell carcinoma can take on many forms. The most common warning signs and symptoms include: 

  • Small, shiny translucent or pearly-white nodule
  • Sore that refuses to heal or continuously heals and reopens
  • Slightly-elevated pink growth (may be indented in the center)
  • Irritated patch of skin with a reddish color
  • Waxy-looking scar or lump
  • Flat, scaly patch of skin with a raised edge

If you notice any of these warning signs on your body, contact us as soon as possible and schedule a skin cancer screening with one of our board-certified dermatologists in Lebanon, Tennessee.

Basal cell carcinomas may appear as a lump that continuously gets bigger over time and may become crusty, bleed or develop into a painless ulcer. It may also be a sore that continuously heals, reopens, and bleeds.

While basal cell carcinoma is rarely fatal, it can become disfiguring and life-threatening. If left undiagnosed and untreated, basal cell carcinoma can become locally aggressive, growing wide and deep into the skin and destroying skin, tissue, and bone. This is why it is important to visit your dermatologist for regular skin cancer screenings.

Basal cell carcinoma rarely spreads from its original site. If it does spread, it grows very slowly, especially compared to the more dangerous melanoma type.

When a lesion, growth, or tumor is malignant, it means that the cells grow uncontrollably and spread locally and/or to distant sites. Most basal cell carcinomas are benign, as they generally do not spread to other parts of the body.

However, if they go unnoticed for too long, there is an increased risk of the tumor spreading and invading the surrounding tissue, in which case this would mean the tumor is malignant.

If you have recently been diagnosed with basal cell carcinoma, it is important to seek skin cancer treatment as soon as possible to reduce the risk of spreading and optimize your skin health.

With ever-improving skin cancer treatments, survival for most non-melanoma skin cancers is very high. When detected early, the 5-year relative survival rate for BCC is 100 percent.

The key to surviving all skin cancers is detecting and treating them early, which is why skin cancer screenings are crucial to your health. Contact us to schedule yours today in Lebanon, Tennessee.

A risk factor is something that increases your chances of developing basal cell carcinoma, as well as other forms of cancer. While having several risk factors does not guarantee that you will get BCC, it also does not mean that you will not develop it if you have zero.

Some basal cell carcinoma risk factors include:

  • Total lifetime exposure to UV rays – The more time you spend in the sun or tanning beds, the greater your chances of acquiring cellular damage that can lead to cancer.
  • Fair appearance  – Though people with fair skin are at a greater risk, people of all skin tones can develop skin cancer.
  • Skin cancer history – After developing basal or squamous cell carcinoma, your chances of developing it again are higher. Also, BCCs on the nose, ears, and lips are more likely to recur within two years of treatment.
  • Weakened immune system – Your immune system helps fight off cancers of all kinds, so having other illnesses that compromise your immune system raises the chances of developing BCC.
  • Over 50 years old – most basal cell carcinomas appear in people over the age of 50.

You can reduce your risk of developing BCC by wearing a daily sunscreen, avoiding sun exposure at peak hours (10 AM to 2 PM), covering up with UPF clothing, and getting regular skin cancer screenings.

At Cumberland skin, we first diagnose the condition by taking a biopsy of the suspicious growth. This involves removing a small piece of the tissue and sending it for microscopic analysis. If the pathologist confirms the diagnosis of basal cell carcinoma, we will then look into your treatment options.

Generally, our experienced dermatologists treat basal cell carcinoma through surgical excision, which involves the complete surgical removal of the tumor, as well as a small area of healthy skin around it (called the margin).

Depending on the severity of your basal cell carcinoma, we may also recommend the following skin cancer treatments:

  • Topical Chemotherapy Creams
  • Cryosurgery
  • Curettage and Electrodessication
  • Mohs Surgery

The key to a successful treatment is completely removing all of the cancerous cells and their roots. This reduces the chances of recurrence and helps you maintain your health long-term. If you have any questions about treatment for basal cell carcinoma, get in touch with our dermatology practice in Lebanon, TN, by calling (615) 449-5771 or contacting us online.

In most cases, skin cancer treatment is covered by insurance. Though this may vary depending on your individual healthcare plan and coverage. We recommend you contact your insurance provider for clarification on what type of dermatology treatments are covered under your healthcare plan.


Basal Cell Carcinoma Photos

If you are unsure of what basal cell carcinoma looks like, browse our photo gallery below to get a better understanding of how it may appear on your skin. Schedule a skin cancer screening at Cumberland Skin as soon as possible if you are displaying similar symptoms. Call us at (615) 449-5771 or request an appointment online.


Schedule Your Basal Cell Carcinoma Treatment in Lebanon, Tennessee

Are you showing symptoms of BCC? Or have you been recently diagnosed and require comprehensive treatment? Consult with the dermatologists at Cumberland Skin. Our team has years of experience evaluating, diagnosing, and treating basal cell carcinoma, and other forms of skin cancer, to help patients restore and maintain the health of their skin.

Schedule your basal cell carcinoma treatment or screening in Lebanon, Tennessee, today by requesting an appointment online or calling our clinic at (615) 449-5771.

Contact Us Today

Have questions or concerns? Please call us at 615-449-5771.

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