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Br J Dermatol. 2007 Dec;157 Suppl 2:47-51.

Epidemiology and aetiology of basal cell carcinoma.

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Department of Dermatology Venereology and Allergy, Skin Cancer Center Charité, University Hospital of Berlin, Berlin, Germany.


Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is a malignant epithelial neoplasm of the skin preferentially affecting male caucasians and is rarely observed in patients with more intense skin pigmentation. A characteristic feature of BCCs are their extremely low risk to metastasize. Epidemiological data indicate that the overall incidence is increasing worldwide significantly by about 3-10% per annum.(1-3) Based on the increasing incidence of this usually not life-threatening tumour BCC appears to develop into a growing public health problem. This review elucidates the risk factors for the development and for the progression of BCC leading to an improved understanding of this tumour.

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