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Title: Treatment of cutaneous basal cell carcinoma with combined laser extirpation and methyl aminolevulinic acid : five-year success rates
Authors: Azzopardi, Ernest A.
Abdelrahman, W.
Azzopardi, Elayne
O’Leary, B.
Yarrow, Jeremy
Miles, N.
Barbara, Christopher H.
Camilleri, L.
Clementoni, Matteo Tretti
Murison, Maxwell
Keywords: Skin -- Diseases
Laser therapy
Issue Date: 2021
Publisher: Royal College of Surgeons of England
Citation: Azzopardi, E. A., Abdelrahman, W., Azzopardi, E., O’Leary, B., Yarrow, J., Miles, N., ... & Murison, M. (2021). Treatment of cutaneous basal cell carcinoma with combined laser extirpation and methyl aminolevulinic acid: five-year success rates. The Annals of The Royal College of Surgeons of England. DOI:10.1308/rcsann.2020.7020
Abstract: Introduction Basal cell carcinoma is the most common cancer. Excisional surgery is associated with a high clearance rate, at the expense of significant functional and aesthetic morbidity, especially within the T-zone or for extensive lesions. We report five-year follow-up outcomes for carbon dioxide laser extirpation of cutaneous basal cell carcinoma assisted by immediate methyl aminolevulinate photodynamic therapy and cost–benefit considerations. Materials and methods Retrospective cohort database analysis of adult patients with biopsy-proven primary cutaneous basal cell carcinoma, completing five years of follow-up. Direct per-lesion cost was compared with conventional wide local excision. Patients with morphoeic basal cell carcinoma were excluded. Results Treated lesions were up to 1% total body surface area and up to 3.8mm (1.38 ± 0.695cm, mean± standard deviation) in biopsy-proven depth. At the five-year follow-up mark, 93.6% of treated areas remained free of recurrence. Nodular basal cell carcinoma was the most common subtype (41.5%). A mean tumour depth greater than 2± 0.872mm was significantly associated with recurrence (Mann–Whitney, p=0.0487). For a service delivered through the NHS at 2015 prices, we report a 43% saving, equating to a saving of £235 per basal cell carcinoma or a national annualised saving of £70 million by 2025 for the NHS. Conclusion CO2-assisted photodynamic therapy is non-inferior to excision but may offer better functional and cosmetic preservation at a fraction of the direct like for like cost of operative surgery.
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