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Eyelid Skin Cancer / Periocular Basal Cell Carcinoma

Read our Facial basal cell carcinoma publication in the BMJ (free)

Certain areas of the face are at high risk for invisibly spreading skin cancers. Incomplete excision of a cancer at this site can result in further surgery and so can impact on the repair options. This in turn can affect the function of the eyelids or cosmesis.

More importantly a correct and early diagnosis benefits removal and eventual reconstruction. Possibly 20-40% of periocular BCC are misdiagnosed. My feeling is that this is because they are difficult to diagnose and if an initial or second treatment for a stye, chalazion or blepharitis fails then maybe one should consider that a biopsy might be useful.

For help with diagnosis remember LUI
Loss of lashes
Ulcer
Infiltration

I do a lot of skin cancer surgery for BCC in this area and in my opinion the eyelids is one of those places on the face that a skin cancer doctor should try to get it right each time, every time, 100% of the time.

5-10% of all skin cancers occur on the eyelids. As 90-95% of all cancers of the eyelids are basal cell carcinomas - almost all will benefit from Mohs micrographics surgery. I work in conjuction with an oculoplastic or plastic surgeon and ask for their help in reconstructing this complex area. 

Eyelid BCC in pictures on dermnet.nz        

 
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