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Giornale Italiano di Dermatologia e Venereologia 2000 April;135(2):171-4

Copyright © 2000 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Incidence of skin cancer worldwide

Argenziano G., Satriano R. A., Diasio M., Grimaldi E.

From the Istituto di Clinica Dermosifilopatica II Università degli Studi, Napoli


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The world incidence of non-melanoma skin cancer is about 311.5 cases on 100,000 people. Among skin cancers the basal cell carcinoma (BCC) shows the highest incidence (120.4/100,000 men; 92.2/100,000 women), followed by squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), (31.2/100,000 men; 16.9/100,000 women). BCC is 4 to 5 times more frequent than SCC. With respect to women, men are more affected, by a ratio of 4/1. The average age of onset is 61 years (±11.3) in men, 75.1 (±5.2) in women. The body areas more frequently involved are head and face, followed by the trunk, the upper limbs and the lower limbs. BCC mortality is around 0.12%, and 4.3% for SCC. The factors considered most responsible for the increased incidence of non-melanoma skin cancers in the last years are: UVB (correlated to DNA damage and negative effects on the immune system), UVA (only if associated with photosensitive chemical substances), ionizing radiations, chemical agents, some genetic conditions (xeroderma pigmentosum, nevoid basal cell carcinoma), phototype I and II according to the Fitzpatrick classification, immunological defects allowing the expression in the DNA of oncogenic viruses (HPV 5, 16, 18, 31, 35, 51), and precancerous lesions.

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