Which histologic findings are characteristic of morpheaform (sclerosing) basal cell carcinoma?

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

The more aggressive morpheaform BCCs have growth patterns resulting in strands of cells rather than round nests, within a fibrous stroma. They constitute approximately 5% of BCCs. Morpheaform BCC arises as thin strands of tumor cells (often only 1 cell in thickness) that are embedded in a dense fibrous stroma. The morpheaform basal cell carcinomas exhibit islands of tumor extending into the tissue and may exhibit perineural invasion in 3% of patients. This finding helps classify these 2 histotypes as the most aggressive, with the highest rates of recurrence and positive margins after excision.


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