In some patients, if basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is left untreated or has not responded to treatment, the cancer advances deeper into the skin, bones or other tissues and progresses to advanced BCC (comprising locally advanced and metastatic BCC), where surgery is inappropriate (e.g. inoperable or unresectable BCC).1-6Advanced BCC can be disfiguring or debilitating and can lead to significant morbidity.1,2 Once metastasised, BCC is highly malignant and is associated with a poor prognosis; median survival is 8 to 14 months1,2 and only 10% of patients are expected to be alive 5 years after diagnosis.6
1. Walling HW, et al. Aggressive basal cell carcinoma: presentation, pathogenesis, and management. Cancer Metastasis Rev. 2004;23:389-402.
2. Ting PT, et al. Metastatic basal cell carcinoma: report of two cases and literature review. J Cutan Med Surg. 2005;10-15.
3. Lear JT, et al. Basal cell carcinoma. J R Soc Med. 1998;91:585-588.
4. Joshi AD, et al. Demographic and treatment characteristics for advanced basal cell carcinoma (aBCC) in an oncology outpatient setting. J Clin Oncol. 2011;29 (Suppl: abstract e19001).
5. Tang JY, Epstein EH. Medical Management of Advanced or Metastatic Basal Cell Carcinomas.AccessMedicine. 2010. Available from: http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/720380 Last accessed 7 February 2012.
6. Wong B, et al. Basal Cell Carcinoma. BMJ. 2003;327:794-798.