The Impact of Field Cancerization in the Development of Skin Cancer
The concept of field cancerization, described in various types of cancer, has been intensely studied in skin cancer. It can be defined as the process in which the cells in a tissue or organ are transformed, with genetic modifications, but with normal clinical and histologic features, prior to neoplastic development or coexisting with malignant cells, independently of clonality. Applying this concept to clinical practice could have potentially important implications in early diagnosis, risk stratification, primary and secondary chemoprevention, definition of resection margins, and approach to local and distance recurrences. This paper presents a literature review on the concept of field cancerization, with emphasis on the potential implications for daily clinical practice.
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