What is cutaneous Squamous Cell Carcinoma (cSCC)?

cSCC is a common form of skin cancer that develops in squamous skin cells that make up the middle (dermis) and outer (epidermis) layers of the skin. The majority of cSCC develops as a result of long-term and prolonged exposure to the ultraviolet (UV) rays from the sun or from tanning beds or lamps. Consequently, cSCC is usually found on areas of the body exposed to UV rays such as the face, neck and the backs of the hands.

Your skin has three layers. Each layer plays an important role and function in your body.

  • The epidermis is the outermost layer of skin. It provides a waterproof barrier and creates our skin tone.
  • The dermis is below the epidermis and contains hair follicles, sweat glands and tough connective tissues.
  • The subcutaneous tissue is below the dermis and is made of fat and connective tissue.

When cSCC is found very early and only in the epidermis, it is called cSCC in situ. It may also be called Bowen’s disease or intraepidermal cSCC. The good news is it is much easier to treat effectively at this early stage. When cSCC is caught early and removed, over 95% of people are cured, and it rarely spreads to other distant areas of the body. So it is a cancer that is relatively easy to treat.

However, cSCC in situ may spread and become invasive if not treated. This means that the cancer can grow into nearby tissue or deeper layers of skin.

Learn more about causes and risk factors CLICK HERE

Who gets cSCC?

Of the estimated 76,100 Canadians affected by
non-melanoma skin cancer annually,
approximately 23% are diagnosed with cSCC1

76,100 Canadians affected by non-melanoma skin cancer annually, 23% suffer from CSCC

1 in 20 Canadians will develop cSCC in their lifetime1

1 in 20 Canadians will develop cSCC in their lifetime

Helping You Understand Cutaneous Squamous Cell Carcinoma (CSCC) A Patient Guidebook

Cutaneous Squamous Cell Carcinoma (cSCC) Patient Forum

Ask questions or learn from others. Join our online patient community by visiting MNC cSCC forum

Images of cSCC

View the Symptoms & Presentation of CSCC.