Basal cell carcinoma and stress

Troubled early parent-child relationships and recent stressful life events are linked to poorer immune response to basal cell carcinoma (BCC), according to US researchers

This study was conducted in a university medical centre and analysed the records of 91 patients aged 23-92 years who had a BCC in the previous year.  

Among them, those who were emotionally maltreated as a child by either parent had poorer immune response to the BCC. Of these, those maltreated by their fathers had higher depressive symptoms. Expression of four BCC tumour mRNA markers linked to BCC progression and regression were assessed in biopsy specimens.

It is known that the incidence of BCCs is on the increase worldwide and that the tumours are immunogenic. The authors comment that psychological stress may play a part in the BCC tumour environment, which has implications for subsequent tumours. Depressive symptoms or emotional maltreatment alone were not associated with local BCC immune response.

This study is the first to suggest a troubled early parent-child relationship, in combination with a severe life event in the past year, can predict the local immune response to a BCC.
Fagundes CP, Glaser R, Johnson SL et al. Arch Gen Psychiatry 2012; 69(6): 618-26

Want news like this straight to your inbox?
Sign up for our bulletins

Read these next

The increase in non-melanoma skin cancer

The increase in non-melanoma skin cancer

Sun-seeking behaviour is thought to be the main cause...

Expert Opinion: Skin cancer and the two-week wait referral

Expert Opinion: Skin cancer and the two-week wait referral

Is the two-week wait referral system improving diagnosis...

Diagnosis and treatment of basal cell carcinoma

Diagnosis and treatment of basal cell carcinoma

Surgical excision is the mainstay of treatment in this...

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Already registered?
Sign in

MIMS Product Slides

Product overviews prepared by the MIMS team, in a handy slide format.

Click here

Slides are initiated, funded & reviewed by the companies specified.

Register or Subscribe to MIMS

GPs can get MIMS print & online and GPonline for free when they register online – take 2 minutes, and make sure you get your free MIMS access! If you're not a GP, you can subscribe to MIMS for full access.

Register or subscribe

MIMS Dermatology

Read the latest issue online exclusively on MIMS Learning.

Read MIMS Dermatology

MIMS Adviser

Especially created for prescribing influencers.

Request free copy

Mobile apps

MIMS: access the full drug database and quick-reference tables on the go

MIMS Diagnosis and Management: concise information on signs and symptoms, investigations and diseases