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BioMed Research International
Volume 2016 (2016), Article ID 7682917, 6 pages
Research Article

Treatment of Pigmented Basal Cell Carcinoma with 3 mm Surgical Margin in Asians

Department of Dermatology, Kaohsiung Chang Gung Memorial Hospital and Chang Gung University College of Medicine, Kaohsiung, Taiwan

Received 29 June 2016; Accepted 11 August 2016

Academic Editor: Yunfeng Zhao

Copyright © 2016 Shang-Hung Lin et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Background. In Asians, most basal cell carcinomas (BCCs) are pigmented with clear borders. The consensus of 4 mm surgical margin for BCC largely depends on studies in nonpigmented BCCs in Caucasians. However, little is known about recurrences of pigmented BCCs with a narrower surgical margin. We aimed to investigate 5-year recurrence of BCCs, either pigmented or nonpigmented, in Taiwanese with 3 mm surgical margin. Materials and Methods. 143 patients with BCC (M/F = 66/77, average 64 years) were confirmed pathologically from 2002 to 2013. Based on the pathological margin (>1 mm, ≤1 mm, and involved), patients were categorized into the complete excision group (), histology with close proximity group (), and unclear surgical margin group (). Results. Among 143 cases, 105 were pigmented. With standard 3 mm excision, there were 7 recurrences, with 6 of them from nonpigmented BCC group. Logistic regression showed that pigmentation was associated with lower recurrence. Interestingly, 5-year recurrence of completely excised and histology with close proximity BCC (0/77 versus 1/43) was not different statistically. Conclusions. A 3 mm surgical margin is adequate for pigmented BCC. A “wait and see” approach rather than further wide excision is appropriate for BCC with <1 mm free margin.