All About Basal Cell Nevus Syndrome

All About Basal Cell Nevus Syndrome

Basal cell nevus syndrome is an umbrella term for a group of irregularities caused by a genetic condition. This rare genetic disorder can affect many parts of your body and raise your risk for developing types of cancer, including basal cell carcinoma, the most common kind of skin cancer.

At the practice of Ali Hendi, MD, in Chevy Chase, Maryland, Dr. Hendi and our team of skin cancer specialists diagnose and treat skin cancers associated with basal cell nevus syndrome. Read on to learn more about this condition, including ways we can help.

Signs and risk factors

If you have one parent who has the gene responsible for causing basal cell nevus syndrome, you have a 50% chance of inheriting it and developing the condition as well. The most common sign of having basal cell nevus syndrome is developing the form of skin cancer known as basal cell carcinoma during adolescence or young adulthood.

This syndrome may also cause other cancers early on in life, including breast cancer, ovarian cancer, and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Basal cell nevus syndrome is also linked with particular physical features, such as:

If basal cell nevus syndrome affects your nervous system, you also run the risk of becoming blind or deaf or experiencing seizures.

If you’re showing signs of basal cell nevus syndrome, your provider at the office of Ali Hendi, MD, will recommend tests to get a diagnosis. They may also perform a biopsy on any unusual moles or growths on your skin to check for basal cell carcinoma.

Treating basal cell nevus syndrome

Because basal cell nevus syndrome can cause many issues, our team works closely with other specialists to treat the various aspects of the condition. If skin cancer is involved, that’s where we come in.

We can monitor your skin for signs of basal cells and address these cancers as they develop. If you do develop skin cancer, we can treat it using Mohs surgery.

Mohs surgery is an advanced treatment for skin cancer that leaves as much healthy tissue as possible. With this type of surgery, your provider removes a thin layer of tissue and examines it under a microscope. If signs of skin cancer are present, then they remove another thin layer. Your provider keeps doing this until they remove a layer that has no more signs of cancer. Then they close the wound.

This type of surgery allows your provider to remove the cancer and leave as much healthy tissue as possible. Mohs surgery has the highest cure rate for basal cell carcinoma. In fact, 99% of cases are cured with Mohs surgery. 

Other treatments may include excision, freezing, or scraping away the cancerous tissue.

To learn more about basal cell nevus syndrome or to get care, call 301-259-5710 or book an appointment online with the practice of Ali Hendi, MD, today.

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