A member asked:

What are the odds of a squamous cell skin cancer spreading to lymph nodes?

13 doctors weighed in across 4 answers

Very high: Neglected sqamous cell skin cancer is a very lethal lesion. It rapidly penetrates to deeper layers of skin , spread to regional lymph nodes. Early detection and wide excision will assure cure if you see a non healing ulcer seek the help of your physician for early diagnosis and cure.

Answered 1/16/2021

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Dr. Kris Gast answered

Nodes and skin ca: Squamous cell overall has a 10 to 15% rate of nodal spread, depending on the depth of invasion, the grade, the size of the lesion, how long it has been present, and if it is recurrent. Basal cell carcinoma rarely spreads...You can find a few reports in the literature of a handful of patients who have had this happen and I have only seen one in 25 years.

Answered 9/12/2020

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Low: Squamous cells carcinomas of the skin do not usually spread to the nodes, if treated early. Left untreated, the lesions spread locally and spread to the lymph nodes.

Answered 12/10/2019

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Dr. Mike Bowman answered

Specializes in ENT and Head and Neck Surgery

Depends on size: The size of the primary tumor is most important. If the cancer is caught early, then the risk of spread is low. If it is not removed, the longer it grows, the higher the risk of spread. More aggressive cancers (based on appearance under the microscope) will tend to grow faster and also spread earlier compared to other tumors.

Answered 9/12/2020

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