Glossary and abbreviations
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Clinical practice guidelines for keratinocyte cancer > Glossary and abbreviations
|acquired immune deficiency syndrome
|American Joint Committee on Cancer
|basal cell carcinoma
|chronic lymphocytic leukaemia
|cluster of differentiation 4
|cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma
|disease modifying anti-rheumatic drug
|electrodessication and curettage
|epidermal growth factor receptor
|epithelial membrane antigen
|hedgehog pathway inhibitor
|human immunodeficiency virus
|inflammatory bowel disease
|interferon alpha 1
|international normalised ratio
|International Transplant Skin Cancer Collaborative
|keratinocyte cancer (previously known as non-melanoma skin cancer)
|linear (particle) accelerator
|magnetic resonance imaging
|mechanistic target of rapamycin kinase
|Merkel cell carcinoma
|Mohs micrographic surgery
|National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (UK)
|nuclear factor kappa B subunit 1
|organ transplant recipient
|patched 1 gene
|psoralen and ultraviolet A
|randomised controlled trial
|receiver operating characteristic
|Skin Care in Organ Transplant Patients, Europe
|Skin Tumours in Allograft Recipients
|smoothened, frizzled class receptor
|standard mortality ratio
|standardised incidence ratio
|sun protection factor
|tumour mutation burden
|tumour necrosis factor
|Tumour, lymph nodes, metastases (classification system)
|Union for International Cancer Control
|Volumetric modulated arc therapy
|An intraepithelial dysplastic lesion that sometimes leads to invasion, occurring on chronically sun-exposed skin and characterised by inflamed, reddened scaly patches on the skin (previously called solar keratosis)
|Basal cell carcinoma
|An intraepithelial dysplastic lesion that sometimes leads to invasion
|A term used to describe basaloid tumours that show evidence of squamatisation (synonymous with metatypical). Basosquamous/metatypical tumours should be viewed as equivalent to squamous cell carcinoma and are classified as aggressive subtypes of basal cell carcinoma by the World Health Organization.
|An inherited medical condition that causes early-onset basal cell carcinoma
|Cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma in situ (also known as intra-epidermal squamous cell carcinoma) – a pre-cancerous growth
|Bowenoid solar keratosis
|An actinic keratosis that shows full-thickness atypia, without dermal invasion (equivalent to cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma in situ)
|A method of delivering radiotherapy to a localised area by placing the source of the radiation on or very close to the lesion being treated.
|A class of immunosuppressant agents that includes everolimus and sirolimus
|The use of pharmacological products to prevent disease (in this case, skin cancer)
|Cluster of differentiation 4
|A type of glycoprotein found on the surface of immune cells (antigen)
|A rare autosomal recessive congenital disorder characterised by growth failure and sensitivity to sunlight
|The use of very low temperature to treat skin cancer and related dysplasias. The most commonly used agent is liquid nitrogen (boiling point –196°C).
|The use of a sharp debriding instrument (curette) to remove skin cancer or related dysplasias from the skin under local anaesthetic
|Cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma
|A malignant tumour derived from epidermal keratinocytes. It may arise in actinic keratosis or Bowen’s disease and may show a range of differentiation. It is more likely to spread than basal cell carcinoma.
|Tumour-induced sclerotic and extensive fibrous stroma, which may be mistaken for a scar. Desmoplastic tumours often present as infiltrative cords of cells, may have ill-defined boundaries, and are prone to recurrence. Squamous cell carcinoma, basal cell carcinoma and other tumours may produce this pattern.
|The use of a direct electrical current to produce heat so as destroy and remove tissue (e.g. skin cancer) and achieve haemostasis
|The use of an electric current to destroy and remove tissue (e.g. skin cancer) and achieve haemostasis
|An autosomal dominant syndrome characterised by multiple keratoacanthomas that appear during adolescence, spontaneously involute and recur many times
|Fine needle aspiration cytology
|The use of a fine needle to biopsy a tumour or lymph node to obtain cells for cytological confirmation of diagnosis
|An autosomal dominant syndrome characterised by multiple basal cell carcinomas occurring from an early age (also called naevoid basal cell carcinoma syndrome)
|The area of the face that includes the central face, eyelids, eyebrows, periorbital, nose, lips, chin, mandible, preauricular and postauricular skin and sulci, temple, and ear
|A keratinocyte cancer treatment that induces expression of cytokines related to cell-mediated immune responses, including interferon alpha 1, tumour necrosis factor and various interleukins
|A naturally occurring cytokine with antiviral, antimicrobial, anti-tumour and immunomodulatory actions
|Intraepidermal squamous cell carcinoma
|See Bowen’s disease.
|Keratinocyte cancer (previously known as non-melanoma skin cancer)
|A group of skin cancers that includes basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma (previously known as non-melanoma skin cancer)
|A skin tumour commonly found on sun-exposed skin and characterised by rapid growth and spontaneous regression, with a close histological resemblance to well-differentiated conventional cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma. Keratoacanthoma is classified by World Health Organization as a variant of cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma.
|The use of laser technology to ablate skin cancer and related dysplasias
|Mechanistic target of rapamycin kinase (MTOR) inhibitor
|A group of drugs with immunosuppressive and antineoplastic effects, which includes sirolimus and everolimus
|The use of very high voltage electric current to create high-energy radiotherapy that can deeply penetrate tissues and is usually skin sparing.
|Merkel cell carcinoma
|A primary neuroendocrine tumour of the skin
|A histopathological description of a growth pattern of basal cell carcinoma (a high-risk subtype)
|Mohs micrographic surgery
|A highly specialised procedure where there is careful orientation and mapping of the specimen at surgical removal, followed by the horizontal frozen sectioning of the tissue. This results in topographic and microscopic analysis of the whole outer margin of the specimen. A key component of the technique is that the proceduralist removing the tumour also examines the histological slides. The Mohs procedure aims to ensure complete tumour clearance while maximising normal tissue conservation and function. Once the tumour clearance has been confirmed, the wound is closed.
|A feature of modern linear accelerators that helps define a radiotherapy beam
|Naevoid basal cell carcinoma syndrome
|See Gorlin’s syndrome.
|A tumour suppressor gene. Abnormalities of this gene leading to dysfunctional p53 protein have been demonstrated in cancers of many different types, including keratinocyte cancer
|Patched 1 gene
|A tumour suppressor gene, mutations of which are associated with nevoid basal cell carcinoma syndrome
|Perineural invasion (also known as perineural spread)
|Invasion of a tumour in the perineural compartment of a peripheral nerve fibre, exhibited by some of the more aggressive keratinocyte cancers (also known as perineural spread)
|The use of light to activate a photosensitiser that is localised in diseased tissues, resulting in the formation of cytotoxic reactive oxygen species
|Poorly differentiated tumours
|Tumours in which products of differentiation (e.g. keratin or desmosomal attachments) or adnexal differentiation are poorly expressed. Immunohistochemistry techniques for keratin subsets are often used to identify such tumours.
|The use of ionising radiation to treat cancer and related disease
|A hereditary syndrome that causes early-onset basal cell carcinoma
|Scar-like (morphoeic) – a term used to describe one of the clinical variants of basal cell carcinoma
|Skin flap (surgical technique)
|A surgical technique in which an area of healthy skin is partly detached and moved to cover a nearby wound (e.g. after removal of a large skin cancer). The skin flap may fat or muscle as well as skin. The flap usually stays attached to its original site at one end so that it remains connected to a blood vessel.
|A surgical technique in which an area of healthy skin is removed and transplanted onto a new place on the body (e.g. to replace skin lost when surgically removing a large skin cancer).
|Smoothened, frizzled class receptor
|A protein encoded by the SMO gene, which is a component of the hedgehog signalling pathway
|See actinic keratosis.
|Medical practitioners who through training, experience and peer opinion specialise in the management of keratinocyte cancers.
|Squamous cell carcinoma in situ
|See Bowen’s disease.
|Sun protection factor
|Laboratory-derived rating system for sunscreens active in the ultraviolet B (UVB) range. The SPF number indicates the multiple by which a dose of ultraviolet radiation which causes minimal erythema in human skin needs to be increased to cause minimal erythema in the same person when the tested sunscreen has been applied to their skin prior to exposure.
|Radiotherapy that is absorbed within the first few millimetres of skin and does not penetrate to the deeper tissues. Usually means external beam radiotherapy in which a certain machine is used that is not a linear accelerator and shielding requirements are not as complex or time consuming.
|A classification system for cancers based on assessment of the tumour, lymph nodes, and metastases. Unless stated otherwise, tumour stage is according to the American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) cancer staging manual 8th edition and Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) TNM classification of malignant tumours 8th edition.
|Tumour necrosis factor
|A cell signalling protein (cytokine) involved in the regulation of immune cells
|Ultraviolet (UV) radiation
|The solar spectrum reaching the Earth’s surface in the wavelength range of 290–400nm. It includes UVA (ultraviolet radiation of wavelength 320–400nm) and UVB (ultraviolet radiation of wavelength 290–320nm.
|Volumetric modulated arc therapy
|External beam radiotherapy from a linear accelerator with multi-leaf collimators and capable of rotational treatment that can give a very conformal homogeneous dose of radiotherapy to a volume with minimal exposure to surrounding normal tissue in a short time frame. Volumetric modulated arc therapy is for extended skin field cancerisation of convex surfaces.
|A rare hereditary disorder associated with multiple early-onset squamous cell carcinomas and increased risk of other cancers
- Elder DE, Massi D, Scolyer RA, Willemze R. WHO Classification of Skin Tumours. 4th edn. Lyon, France: International Agency for Research on Cancer; 2018.
- Amin MB, Edge S, Greene F, Byrd DR, Brookland RK, Washington MK, Gershenwald JE, Compton CC, Hess KR, et al. (Eds.). AJCC Cancer Staging Manual (8th edition). Springer International Publishing: American Joint Commission on Cancer; 2017 [cited 2016 Dec 28].
- Brierley JD, Gospodarowicz MK, Wittekind C. TNM Classification of Malignant Tumours, 8th Edition. Wiley-Blackwell; 2017.