The unfortunate truth is that statistics show that at least 60 percent of people who have been diagnosed with some type of skin cancer will experience a recurrence within ten years. Although any type of skin cancer can return after a person has been given the “all clear,” there are some skin cancers that are more likely to do so.
Skin Cancer With the Highest Recurrence Rate
Research provided by JAMA Dermatology determined that individuals with Markel cell carcinoma (MCC) have the highest chances of suffering a recurrence of their skin cancer. This rare form of skin cancer is incredibly aggressive and is known to be far more fatal than other types of skin cancer. These studies found that around 40 percent of patients who were initially diagnosed with MCC experienced a recurrence within five years. Nearly 95 percent of patients who experienced a recurrence did so within three years of their initial diagnosis.
Recurrence Rates for Other Cancer
Unfortunately, other types of skin cancer also present a likelihood of a recurrence. However, these percentages tend to be much lower.
- Basal cell carcinoma: Around 7.5 – 10 percent of patients who were initially diagnosed with this type of skin cancer experienced a recurrence.
- Melanoma: Around 18 percent of patients who were initially diagnosed with this type of skin cancer experienced a recurrence. At least 80 percent of patients experienced a recurrence within three years.
- Squamous cell carcinoma of the skin: Around 3 – 8 percent of patients who were initially diagnosed with this type of skin cancer experienced a recurrence.
Recognizing the symptoms of a potential skin cancer recurrence is important when it comes to getting treatment early on.
Signs of a Recurrence
Individuals who experience a skin cancer recurrence may notice itching, tenderness, burning, or even new lesions on their skin. They may also notice a change in the shape or size of any existing lesions. Getting a routine skin examination is important when it comes to recognizing symptoms and getting timely treatment.
Contact Harris Dermatology Today
If you have been previously diagnosed with skin cancer and you suspect a recurrence or would like to schedule a skin examination, contact Harris Dermatology at (239) 936-3344 for their Fort Myers location or (239) 596-1848 for their Naples. You can also request an appointment by filling out the online request form to get started.