Epidemiology of Keratinocyte Skin Cancer with a Focus on Cutaneous Squamous Cell Carcinoma

Lena Nanz, Ulrike Keim, Alexander Katalinic, Thomas Meyer, Claus Garbe, Ulrike Leiter


Keratinocyte skin cancer, consisting of basal cell carcinoma (BCC) and squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), is by far the most common cancer in white-skinned populations, with rapid increases over the last 50 years. While the age-standardized incidence rates increase worldwide, the age-standardized mortality rates are variable. The incidence rates of keratinocyte skin cancer are much higher compared to those of melanoma, and are largely attributed to the raising exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation, the most important causal risk factor for skin cancer. Whereas the development of BCC is mainly due to intense UV exposure during childhood and adolescence, the development of SCC is related to chronic, cumulative UV exposure over decades. Although mortality rates are relatively low, SCC is an increasing problem for healthcare services, significantly causing morbidity, especially in older age groups. This review reports on the epidemiology of keratinocyte skin cancer, with a focus on SCC, in Australia, the United States, and the north of Europe, with an outlook on further challenges health systems will be confronted with in the next 20 years.

Original languageEnglish
Article number606
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 31.01.2024

Research Areas and Centers

  • Research Area: Center for Population Medicine and Public Health (ZBV)
  • Research Area: Luebeck Integrated Oncology Network (LION)

DFG Research Classification Scheme

  • 205-02 Public Health, Health Services Research and Social Medicine
  • 205-19 Dermatology
  • 205-14 Haematology, Oncology

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