Basal cell carcinoma (BCC)

Edinburgh Waterfront Hospital

At Waterfront Private Hospital, we specialise in the diagnosis and treatment of basal cell carcinoma (BCC), the most common form of skin cancer. Our expert team, comprised of leading dermatologists and plastic surgeons, is dedicated to delivering the highest standard of care for BCC patients.

Basal cell carcinoma typically appears as a change in the skin, such as a growth or a sore that doesn’t heal. It often develops in sun-exposed areas. Early detection is crucial for effective treatment, and our state-of-the-art diagnostic tools ensure accurate identification of BCC.

basal cell carcinoma removal edinburgh



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Understanding basal cell carcinoma

  • Slow Growing: BCC typically grows slowly and rarely spreads to other parts of the body (metastasizes). However, if left untreated, it can penetrate deeper into the skin and cause significant local damage.
  • Sun Exposure: Prolonged exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun or tanning beds increases the risk of developing BCC.
  • Appearance: BCC can vary in appearance but often has a pearly or translucent look. It may also have tiny blood vessels (telangiectasias) on the surface.
  • Symptoms: The lesion might bleed, ooze, or become crusty in some cases. It may also itch or cause no discomfort at all.
  • Risk Factors: Factors such as fair skin, age, genetic predisposition, and a history of sunburns or excessive sun exposure increase the risk of developing BCC.

Further reading:

BAPRAS – Basal Cell Carcinoma

BAD – Basal Cell Carcinoma


basal cell carcinoma removal edinburgh

Basal cell carcinoma treatment options

Early detection and treatment of basal cell carcinoma are crucial. Regular self-examinations and professional skin checks are recommended, especially for those with risk factors. At the Waterfront Private Hospital, we emphasize the importance of early diagnosis and offer comprehensive treatment plans tailored to each patient’s condition.

At our clinic, we offer a range of dermatological and plastic surgery options for treating basal cell carcinoma (BCC), tailored to each patient’s specific needs. Our approach combines the expertise of dermatologists and plastic surgeons to ensure both effective cancer removal and optimal cosmetic results.

Dermatological Treatment Options:

  • Cryosurgery: Suitable for small, superficial BCCs, this method uses liquid nitrogen to freeze and destroy cancerous cells.
  • Topical Treatments: For early, superficial BCCs, prescription creams or gels may be used to stimulate the body’s immune response or directly target cancer cells.

Plastic Surgery Options:

  • Surgical Excision: Involves the surgical removal of the cancerous tissue along with a margin of healthy tissue, followed by suturing. This method is commonly used for larger or deeper BCCs.
  • Reconstructive Surgery: For larger BCCs or those in critical areas, reconstructive surgery may be necessary to repair the site post-excision, focusing on preserving or restoring appearance and function.

Our multidisciplinary team works collaboratively to evaluate the best course of action based on the BCC’s size, location, depth, and the patient’s overall health and aesthetic goals. We are committed to providing the highest standard of care, from precise cancer removal to meticulous cosmetic reconstruction, ensuring patient comfort and satisfaction throughout the treatment process.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is Basal Cell Carcinoma (BCC), and Why Is It Important to Treat It Early?

Basal Cell Carcinoma is the most common form of skin cancer, originating from the basal cells in the skin’s lowest layer. Early treatment is crucial because, although BCC grows slowly, it can lead to significant damage and disfigurement if neglected. Prompt intervention by our expert plastic surgeons ensures optimal cosmetic results and a reduced risk of recurrence.

How Do Plastic Surgeons Treat Basal Cell Carcinoma?

Our plastic surgeons at Waterfront Hospital specialise in BCC’s surgical removal, offering techniques like Excisional Surgery, curettage, and Electrodessication. They focus on removing the cancer thoroughly while aiming for the best possible cosmetic outcomes, minimising scarring, and preserving healthy tissue.

Can Basal Cell Carcinoma Spread to Other Parts of the Body?

While BCC is less likely to metastasise than other forms of skin cancer, it can grow into nearby areas and damage tissues if untreated. This highlights the importance of seeking early surgical intervention from our specialised team.

What Are the Signs of Basal Cell Carcinoma That Patients Should Look For?

Signs include new growths, changes in moles, and sores that don’t heal. BCC may appear as a shiny bump, a red patch, or a white scar-like area. Any of these signs should prompt a consultation with our plastic surgeons.

How Does Our Team Ensure the Best Cosmetic Outcome Post-Surgery?

Our surgeons use precise surgical techniques for each patient to minimise scarring and maintain the skin’s appearance. Aftercare includes treatments to reduce scarring and, if needed, reconstructive surgery to restore natural looks.

What Should Patients Expect During the Recovery Process After BCC Surgery?

Recovery depends on the surgery’s scope but typically involves manageable discomfort and detailed aftercare instructions for wound care and activity levels. Our team ensures patients are well-informed on how to care for their skin post-surgery to promote healing and reduce the risk of recurrence.

How Much Does Basal Cell Carcinoma Surgery Cost at Waterfront Hospital?

The cost of BCC surgery at Waterfront Hospital starts from £1495 for direct excision. When reconstruction with a local flap or skin graft is required, the cost starts from £2195. These prices reflect our commitment to providing expert surgical care while considering the complexity and individual needs of each patient’s treatment plan.

How Can Patients Schedule a Consultation for BCC Treatment at Waterfront Hospital?

Patients can book a consultation for BCC treatment by visiting our Contact Us page or calling Waterfront Hospital directly. Our staff is ready to help patients schedule an appointment with our plastic surgery specialists and answer any additional questions.

How Do You Ensure Patient Comfort During BCC Surgery?

Understanding the anxiety and discomfort associated with surgical procedures, Waterfront Hospital prioritises patient comfort. Our expert team employs gentle, minimally invasive techniques where possible and provides comprehensive pain management solutions. We also offer detailed pre-operative consultations to address concerns, ensuring patients are relaxed and informed throughout their treatment.

Can Lifestyle Changes Help Prevent the Recurrence of Basal Cell Carcinoma After Surgery?

While surgical removal is the most effective way to treat BCC, incorporating certain lifestyle changes can help reduce the risk of recurrence. Our team advises patients on the importance of regular skin checks, sun protection measures, including broad-spectrum sunscreen, and adopting a healthy diet rich in antioxidants. We also provide personalised advice on skin care routines to maintain healthy, resilient skin.

Can Basal Cell Carcinoma Affect Young Adults, and How Does Treatment Differ?

While BCC is more common in older adults, it can affect individuals in their 20s and 30s, especially those with significant sun exposure or genetic predispositions. In young adults, our surgeons emphasise carcinoma removal and advanced reconstructive techniques to preserve youthful skin and minimise the impact of surgery. We tailor our approach to each patient’s needs, focusing on health and aesthetic outcomes.

How Can Patients Contribute to the Success of Their BCC Treatment?

Patients play a vital role in the success of their BCC treatment through active participation in pre-and post-operative care, adherence to follow-up appointments, and engagement with preventive measures. Our team encourages open communication, allowing patients to voice concerns and ask questions, ensuring a collaborative approach to treatment and recovery.

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