Defining skin cancer local recurrence

Ashley Wysong, Shauna Higgins, Travis W. Blalock, Dominic Ricci, Rich Nichols, Franki Lambert Smith, Iren Kossintseva

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Definitions of skin cancer recurrence are variable and nonstandardized, which can lead to inconsistent and potentially inappropriate management of tumors of uncertain recurrence status. Defining recurrence is important given the potential association with metastasis in both melanoma and nonmelanoma skin cancer. A review of the literature across multiple disciplines involved in the care of skin cancer patients reveals that although criteria for recurrence are provided in the majority of cases, most are vague and inconsistent. Given the presumably increased morbidity and mortality associated with recurrent tumors, accurate identification and appropriate management is paramount. In addition, value-based health care necessitates validated and relevant outcome measures that are standardized and, thus, enable tracking of comparable and corresponding outcomes. A universal definition of localized skin cancer recurrence would ultimately allow for improved surveillance and informed therapeutic strategies to decrease morbidity and mortality of patients afflicted with skin cancer, the most common cancer nationwide.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)581-599
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of the American Academy of Dermatology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 2019


  • Mohs
  • melanoma
  • nonmelanoma skin cancer
  • recurrence
  • skin cancer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology


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