Verrucous carcinoma

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Verrucous carcinoma
Classification and external resources
ICD-O M8051/3
eMedicine derm/452
MeSH D018289

Verrucous carcinoma (VC) is an uncommon variant of squamous cell carcinoma.[1] This form of cancer is often seen in those who chew tobacco or use snuff orally, so much so that it is sometimes referred to as "Snuff dipper's cancer."

Most patients with verrucous carcinoma have a good prognosis. Local recurrence is not uncommon, but metastasis to distant parts of the body is rare. Patients with oral verrucous carcinoma may be at greater risk of a second oral squamous cell carcinoma, for which the prognosis is worse.

Verrucous carcinoma may occur in various head and neck locations, as well as in the genitalia. The oral cavity is the most common site of this tumor.[2] The ages range from 50 to 80 years with a male predominance and a median age of 67 years.[3] VC may grow large in size, resulting in the destruction of adjacent tissue, such as bone and cartilage.[4] The diagnosis of VC is established by close communication between surgeons and pathologists. Surgeons must provide adequate specimens including the full thickness of the tumors and adjacent uninvolved mucosa for correct diagnoses.[5]

Surgery is considered as the treatment of choice, but the extent of surgical margin and the adjuvant radiotherapy are still controversial.

The major risk factors are cigarette smoking and alcohol consumption, while betel nut is an additional factor in Taiwan. Different gene mutation sites in head and neck cancer between western countries and Taiwan have been reported.[6][7][8][9] The clinical presentation of VC originated from exposure to different carcinogens may not be the same.


This form of cancer is often seen in those who chew tobacco or use snuff orally, so much so that it is sometimes referred to as "Snuff dipper's cancer." Chewing betel nuts is an additional risk factor commonly seen in Taiwan.

Clinical features[edit]

Rare appearance on foot. An exophytic and hyperkeratotic mass that discharged malodorous debris through several sinus tracts
  • age- usually over 60 years old
  • sex- males are more prone
  • site- gingiva, buccal mucosa, alveolar mucosa, hard palate, floor of the mouth, larynx, oesophagus, penis, vagina, scrotum.
  • clinical presentation-
    • It is a slow growing, diffuse, exophytic lesion usually covered by Leukoplakik patches.
    • Invasive lesions quickly invade bones
    • It can rapidly become fixed with underlying periosteum and cause gradual destruction of jaw bone.
    • Enlarged regional lymph nodes
    • Lesion shows painful multiple rugae like folds and deep clefts between them.


Surgical excision or laser therapy are possible treatments.[citation needed] Surgical excision alone was effective for controlling VC, but elective neck dissection was not necessary even in patients in the advanced stages.[10]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Ridge JA, Glisson BS, Lango MN, et al. "Head and Neck Tumors" in Pazdur R, Wagman LD, Camphausen KA, Hoskins WJ (Eds) Cancer Management: A Multidisciplinary Approach. 11 ed. 2008.
  2. ^ Medina JE, Dichtel W, Luna MA. Verrucous-squamous carcinoma of the oral cavity: a clinicopathologic study of 104 cases. Arch Otolaryngol 1984;110:437-40
  3. ^ Tornes K, Bang G, Koppang HS, Pedweson KN. Oral verrucous carcinoma. Int J Oral Surg 1985;14:485-92
  4. ^ Koch BB, Trask DK, Hoffman HT, Karnell LH, Robinson RA, Zhen W, Menck HR. National survey of head and neck verrucous carcinoma. Cancer 2001;92:110-20
  5. ^ McDonald JS, Crissman JD, Gluckman JL. Verrucous Carcinoma of the oral cavity. Head Neck Surg 1982;5:22-8
  6. ^ Xu J, Gimernez-Conti IB, Cunningham JE, Collet AM, Luna MA, Lanfranchi HE, Spitz MR, Conti CJ. Alterations of p53, cyclin D1, Rb, and H-ras in human oral carcinoma related to tobacco use. Cancer 1998;83:204-12
  7. ^ Saranath D, Chang SE, Bhotie LT, Panchal RG, Kerr IB, Mehta AR, Johnson NW, Deo MG. High frequency mutation in codons 12 and 61 of H-ras oncogene in chewing tobacco-related human oral carcinoma in India. Br J Cancer 1991;63:573-78
  8. ^ Yeudall WA, Torrance LK, Elsegood KA, Speight P, Soully C, Prime SS. Ras gene point mutations rare event in premalignant tissues and malignant cells and tissues from oral mucosa lesions. Eur J Cancer 1993;29B:63-7
  9. ^ Kuo MYP, Jeng JH, Chiang CP, Hahn LJ. Mutations of kiras oncogened codon 12 in betel nut chewing related human oral squamous cell carcinoma in Taiwan. J Oral Pathol Med 1994;23:70-4.
  10. ^ Chang Gung Med J 2003;26:807-12

External links[edit]