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What Is Basal Cell Carcinoma?

Learn about basal cell carcinoma from board-certified dermatologist Ahmet Altiner in this Howcast video.


Every year, more than one million people in the United States are diagnosed with skin cancer. Basal cell carcinoma is by far the most common one. Oftentimes related to sun exposure, basal cell carcinomas happen later in life, most often in Caucasians. Around the nose, around the eye and around the ear are the top three places a basal cell carcinoma can happen.

Spotting a basal cell carcinoma can be a challenge. It can present as just a red spot, a pearly little bump or a persistent spot that bleeds. Only a biopsy can determine whether you have basal cell carcinoma or not. If you have any of these symptoms it's important to see a dermatologist and get a skin biopsy to give you a definitive diagnosis.

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