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Do lasers or topicals really work for nonmelanoma skin cancers?

Author(s): Brightman L, Warycha M, Anolik R, Geronemus R

Affiliation(s): Laser & Skin Surgery Center of New York, 317 East 34th Street New York, NY 10016, USA. lbrightman@laserskinsurgery.com

Publication date & source: 2011-03, Semin Cutan Med Surg., 30(1):14-25.

Publication type: Review

Novel strategies are urgently needed to address the millions of nonmelanoma skin cancers treated in the United States annually. The need is greatest for those patients who are poor surgical candidates or those prone to numerous nonmelanoma skin cancers and therefore at risk for marked disfigurement. Traditional treatment strategies include electrosurgery with curettage, radiation therapy, cryotherapy, excision, and Mohs micrographic surgery. Alternatives to traditional treatment, including topical medications and light or laser therapies, are becoming popular; however, there are various degrees of efficacy among these alternative tactics. These alternatives include topical retinoids, peels, 5-fluorouracil, imiquimod, photodynamic therapy, and lasers. The purpose of this paper is to review the available data regarding these alternative strategies and permit the reader to have a sense of which therapies are reasonable options for care. 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Page last updated: 2011-12-09

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