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Expert Opin Pharmacother. 2010 Jun;11(9):1515-27. doi: 10.1517/14656566.2010.481284.

Treating skin cancer with topical cream.

Author information

1
University of Catania, Dermatology Clinic, A.O.U. Policlinico - Vittorio Emanuele, Via Santa Sofia, 78 95123 Catania, Italy. cldermct@nti.it

Abstract

IMPORTANCE OF THE FIELD:

Topical pharmacotherapy is an approach to consider in selected skin cancers. Noninvasive, tissue-sparing, topical, self-administered treatments represent a highly desirable alternative option, both in aged and unhealthy patients who may be poor surgical candidates, as well as in relatively young subjects with lesions located on cosmetically sensitive areas wishing to avoid disfiguring scars. This paper reviews and discusses the use of topical pharmacotherapy in the treatment of skin cancer.

AREAS COVERED IN THIS REVIEW:

This paper examines the existing literature and updates current knowledge of topical pharmacotherapy for skin cancer using fluorouracil, imiquimod, diclofenac and retinoids.

WHAT THE READER WILL GAIN:

There is a gap between current and best practice in that the use of pharmacotherapy in the treatment of skin cancer is only partially known. The purpose of this paper is to provide an in-depth knowledge on this topic; consequently, the readers should be able to consider new strategies in their practice.

TAKE HOME MESSAGE:

Topical pharmacotherapy represents an option for treatment of actinic keratoses and selected basal cell carcinomas. Moreover, preliminary reports indicate imiquimod to be effective for skin or mucosal cancers such as Bowen's disease, erythroplasia of Queyrat and lentigo maligna.

PMID:
20408746
DOI:
10.1517/14656566.2010.481284
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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