Trends in the incidence of basal cell carcinoma by histopathological subtype

A. H. M. M. Arits*, M. H. J. Schlangen, P. J. Nelemans, N. W. J. Kelleners-Smeets

*Corresponding author for this work

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Background As a result of the high prevalence, basal cell carcinoma (BCC) causes a significant and expensive health care problem. Objective In this study, we evaluate the proportional increase in BCC by histological subtype over the last two decades. Methods We retrospectively reviewed all primary histological confirmed BCCs diagnosed in the Maastricht University Medical Centre in The Netherlands in the years 1991, 1999 and 2007. Results An annual increase of the number of BCCs of 7% for both genders was shown. The age-standardized incidence rates for BCC increased between 1991 and 2007 from 54.2 to 162.1 per 100 000 men and from 61.7 to 189.8 per 100 000 women. The proportion of superficial BCC increased significantly from 17.6% to 30.7%. Conclusion The incidence of BCC is continuing to increase this century. The observed shift to the superficial histological subtype, which can be treated non-surgically, might reduce the workload in the busy dermatologists practice.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)565-569
JournalJournal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2011


  • basal cell
  • carcinoma
  • epidemiology
  • incidence
  • superficial

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