Background: Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is a non-melanoma form of skin cancer that is frequently localized within the cervicofacial area. So far, little research is available on how patients perceive their facial aesthetics after surgical treatment for BCC. Objectives: To analyse (i)if there was a statistically significant improvement over time with regard to the perceived facial aesthetics of surgical patients; (ii) if there was a significant difference between primary and recurrent BCC patients; and (iii) between patients who had Mohs micrographic surgery (MMS) or surgical excision (SE). To assess (iv) which baseline perceptions and/or clinical parameters may predict the evaluation of facial aesthetics at 6 months after surgery. Methods: Parallel to a clinical trial, a survey was carried out in which patients were asked, by means of a newly developed disease-specific questionnaire, about perceptions with regard to their facial aesthetics before and after surgery. Results: Aesthetic perceptions of all surgical patients improved over time. There was no statistically significant difference on facial aesthetics between the group with a primary or recurrent BCC and patients treated with MMS or SE. Results also showed that the evaluation of postsurgical facial aesthetics can be predicted by both visibility of the tumour and preoperative perceptions. Conclusion: It is recommended to administer preoperatively a short questionnaire in which perceptions related to facial aesthetics are included. In doing so, physicians will become more familiar with the aesthetic problems patients might have regarding their afflicted facial site. Ultimately, it may help physicians in deciding whether patients will benefit from additional cosmetic procedures after surgery. © 2007 The Authors Journal compilation

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Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Essers, B., Nieman, F., Prins, M., Smeets, N., & Neumann, M. (2007). Perceptions of facial aesthetics in surgical patients with basal cell carcinoma. Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology, 21(9), 1209–1214. doi:10.1111/j.1468-3083.2007.02227.x