How are pigmented basal cell carcinoma characterized?

Updated: Mar 02, 2020
  • Author: Robert S Bader, MD; Chief Editor: William D James, MD  more...
  • Print
Answer

Pigmented basal cell carcinoma (see the images below) is an uncommon variant of nodular basal cell carcinoma that usually has brown-black macules in some areas or affecting nearly the entire tumor, occasionally making it difficult to differentiate from melanoma.

Typically, some areas of these tumors do not retain pigment, and pearly, raised borders with telangiectases that are typical of a nodular basal cell carcinoma can be observed. This aids clinically in differentiating this tumor from a malignant melanoma. See the images below.

Pigmented basal cell carcinoma. Pigmented basal cell carcinoma.
Pigmented basal cell carcinoma. Pigmented basal cell carcinoma.
Pigmented basal cell carcinoma has features of nod Pigmented basal cell carcinoma has features of nodular basal cell carcinoma with the addition of dark pigmentation from melanin deposition. The pigmentation often has the appearance of dark droplets in the lesion, as shown here.

Keratotic BCC is a variant of nodular BCC and is usually clinically indistinguishable from nodular BCC histologically.


Did this answer your question?
Additional feedback? (Optional)
Thank you for your feedback!