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6 Nov 2017 12:38


Hoping you may be able to help, I was told I have a BCC on my forehead roughly 4 weeks I know fortunately these hardly ever spread. However mine was both Superficial and Infiltrative, I had MOHS surgery performed on this last week and the surgeon advised it was pretty deep and this was removed in two stages. Surgeon also mentioned that one of the nerves was also inflamed. Does this mean it was growing on one of the nerves? Does this mean it can spread? I am now due to go back until Wednesday to have stitches removed and see the surgeon again and I am now driving myself mad with worry.

Many thanks for your help

Re: Confused....

9 Nov 2017 15:25 in response to noocaulfield

Hello Noocaulfield,

Thank you for posting a question. I apologise for not getting back to you sooner but we have had a few technical problems. I am sorry to learn about your situation.

By now I think that you may have already seen your surgeon and had the chance to talk things over with them. I do hope your questions have been answered.  If not, it is difficult for me to answer your questions specifically, as I do not know the full details of your situation. But the following general information may be of some use.

As you pointed out, basal cell carcinoma (BCC) rarely spreads to another part of the body. I came across an article which suggested that between 1984 to 2011 there are only 300 documented cases of BCC spreading in the medical literature. This may sound a lot, but it is estimated that about 1 million Americans are diagnosed with BCC each year.  There are a few factors that make BCC more likely to spread, but even when the BCC is considered 'high risk' the chances of it spreading to another part of the body  remain relatively low.

BCCS’s that are of a large, over 5 to 10 cm in diameter, are at a higher risk of spread  But this is quite large and most people do not allow them to get so big before seeking medical help. Another factor that can increase the risk of spread  is having a compromised immune system. For example, some people need to take medications that reduce the immune system. Even when these higher risk features are present, most do not spread.

Although in the general scheme of things BCC is not usually life threatening, any type of cancer diagnosis is unsettling. So, it is not unusual to worry about things. I do hope that you feel a little better now.

If you have any other questions do get back to us. If you would like to telephone our Freephone telephone is 0808 800 4040. We are here from Monday to Friday between the hours of 9am to 5pm.

Kind regards,



Re: Confused....

23 Nov 2017 11:34 in response to noocaulfield
Hi there, This post really resonates with me, especially with the lack of stories on the Internet around this subject. After almost 2 years of freezing what my GP thought was a Solar Keratosis on my forehead, I was finally referred to the Dermatology Centre at the hospital to be told the non-healing spot on my forehead was in actual fact a BCC. I was booked in months later to have it surgically removed and then told 2 weeks later that the results from my Histology report showed I have a 'extensive perineural invasive' BCC that has now been classified as a 'high risk' BCC. I've now been referred to the Maxillofacial surgery unit at the hospital and have a consultant appointment next Wednesday to assess next steps, my guess that this might be Mohs surgery. You mention above about yours being 'infiltrative', since the 6th can you advise what steps were taken and how it turned out, I'm extremely anxious that this is all going to turn into something a lot more sinister (google not helping!) than I first thought. :o( Your thoughts are very much appreciated.