Squamous cell carcinoma (skin)

Squamous cell carcinoma (skin)

Squamous cell carcinoma is a malignant epithelial tumor which originates in epidermis, squamous mucosa or areas of squamous metaplasia. In skin, tumor cells destroy the basement membrane and form sheets or compact masses which invade the subjacent connective tissue (dermis). In well differentiated carcinomas, tumor cells are pleomorphic/atypical, but resembling normal keratinocytes from prickle layer (large, polygonal, with abundant eosinophilic (pink) cytoplasm and central nucleus). Their disposal tends to be similar to that of normal epidermis: immature/basal cells at the periphery, becoming more mature to the centre of the tumor masses. Tumor cells transform into keratinized squames and form round nodules with concentric, laminated layers, called "cell nests" or "epithelial/keratinous pearls". The surrounding stroma is reduced and contains inflammatory infiltrate (lymphocytes). Poorly differentiated squamous carcinomas contain more pleomorphic cells and no keratinization. (H&E, ob. x10)



Squamous cell carcinoma (epidermoid carcinoma) - skin - (detail)
Squamous cell carcinoma (skin) - detail

Squamous cell carcinoma (skin). Tumor cells transformed into keratinized squames form round nodules with concentric, laminated layers, called "cell nests" or "epithelial/keratinous pearls". (H&E, ob. X40)

Last updated : 01/30/2009