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SCC - Issue Description

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Issue Name


Other Names
Squamous Cell Carcinoma

Issue Description

Squamous cells are the cells that make up most of the skin, so squamous cell carcinoma refers to an abnormal growth of these cells. Squamous cell carcinoma is usually developed in the epithelial layer of the skin and sometimes in various mucous membranes of the body. This type of cancer can be seen on the skin, lips, inside the mouth, throat or esophagus. This type of cancer is characterized by red, scaly skin that becomes an open sore.


Squamous cell carcinomas commonly arise in non-pigmented, either sparsely-haired or un-haired skin. It is most commonly seen as a result of sun damage.

The lesion looks like a raw ulcer or non-healing sore. This dog skin cancer is locally aggressive but rarely spreads until later in the course of the disease.


To be diagnosed, a biopsy is done where a sample is taken and examined under a microscope.


Risk factors include:

  • Sun exposure
  • Radiation therapy
  • Exposure to carcinogens
  • Chronic skin irritation or inflammation
  • Genetic diseases
  • Presence of premalignant lesions
  • Breeds Commonly Affected

  • Shih Tzus
  • Standard Poodles
  • Mastiffs
  • Basset Hounds
  • Blood Hounds
  • Treatment

    Surgical removal is the treatment of choice. Where surgery is incomplete or not possible, radiation can be used. Limiting exposure to the sun may help prevent sun-induced squamous cell carcinomas.

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