Basal Cell Carcinoma Arising in a Cleft Lip Repair Scar


  • M.W. Wright, BA, R.A. McCarthy, MD, E.B. Kelly, MD, S.T. Wright, BA, and R. F. Wagner, MD have indicated no significant financial interest with commercial supporters.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to: Richard F. Wagner, MD, Professor of Dermatology, University of Texas Medical Branch, 4.112 McCullough Building, 301 University Blvd., Galveston, TX 77555-0783.


Background. A case of basal cell carcinoma (BCC) developing in the repair scar of a cleft lip is presented.

Objective. Primary BCCs arising in surgical scars are very rare and no known reported cases exist of a BCC developing in a surgically repaired cleft lip scar.

Methods. A 69-year-old white man presented with a 5 mm primary BCC on his upper lip at the site of his cleft lip repair scar. The diagnosis was made by a tangential biopsy that showed an ulcerated BCC.

Results. Review of the medical literature indicates that a scar may be an independent risk factor for developing BCC.

Conclusion. BCC may rarely arise in a cleft lip repair scar.