Journal Article
Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
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Squamous cell carcinoma of the legs in African Americans.

BACKGROUND: Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) is the most common skin cancer in African Americans, but its incidence is low. Although incompletely described in the literature, an increased incidence of SCC in sun-protected areas in black patients has been reported.

OBJECTIVE: This study was conducted to better define the incidence, characteristics, and cutaneous markers of SCC occurring on the legs in African Americans.

METHODS: We did a 5-year retrospective chart review of patients diagnosed with SCC in the dermatology clinic of an inner city hospital in the southern United States.

RESULTS: A total of 35 African Americans had biopsy-proven SCC during the study period. Sixteen patients had lesions on the legs; all of them were elderly African-American women, and most showed atypical lesional and perilesional features.

CONCLUSION: SCC is not rare on the legs of elderly African-American women. It can present with atypical features, and physicians must be alert to this possibility. Accompanying cutaneous changes may assist in its diagnosis.

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