About this disease

What it is about

White skin cancer usually grows slowly. The main risk factor for the development of skin cancer is repeated damage to the skin by the sun. Accordingly, the frequency of this disease increases in the course of life and almost always arises from a precancerous stage, a so-called precancerous lesion. Unlike basal cell carcinoma, white skin cancer can spread during the course of the disease and metastasize to other sites in the body. Early detection of spinalioma is therefore important.

Symptoms and consequences

In the skin areas most exposed to sunlight (face, ears, neck, back of the hands, forearms, back of the feet), slowly growing nodules may appear. These often show crusting in the course and may occasionally bleed a little. Due to keratinization, scaling may occur. If the affected areas are not surgically removed, metastases with offshoots in lymph nodes or organs such as the lungs or liver may occur in the later course.

What we do for you

Examination and diagnosis

If an examination of the skin reveals an unusual change, a dermatologist should be consulted for further diagnosis. If an organ involvement is suspected, further steps such as blood tests and so-called imaging examinations such as a computer tomography (CT) are necessary. The removal of a tissue sample provides further information and decides on the further course of therapy.


In the case of white skin cancer, surgical removal by the dermatologist is usually sufficient. In advanced stages and in the presence of offshoots in the body, chemotherapy is usually used. In the case of symptoms such as pain due to bone involvement caused by metastases, radiation therapy may also be considered.

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