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Bowens Disease - Symptoms and Treatment

Bowen's Disease is an abnormality of skin with scaly or thickened patches on the skin and often caused by prolonged exposure to arsenic. It is usually characterized by a pre cancerous, slow growing skin malignancy. Bowen's disease is medically the same as "squamous cell carcinoma in situ." Squamous cell carcinoma is a tumor that develops from the squamous cells which are flat, scale-like cells in the outer layer of the skin (the epithelium). The term "in situ" means "in the natural or normal place" and, in the case of cancer, it says that the tumor cells are still confined to the site where they originated and they have neither invaded neighboring tissues nor metastasized afar. The hallmark of Bowen disease is a persistent, progressive, slightly raised, red, scaly or crusted with little induration, and it frequently resembles a localized thin plaque of psoriasis, dermatitis, or a dermatophyte infection. Diagnosis is by biopsy. Treatment depends on the tumor's characteristics and may involve curettage and electrodesiccation, surgical excision, or cryosurgery.

Causes of Bowens Disease

Common Causes of Bowens Disease :-

  • The main sources of arsenic exposure include Fowler solution, a medication formerly used to treat psoriasis; Gay solution, a medication formerly used to treat asthma; contaminated well water; and certain pesticides.
  • Bowen's Disease is a condition which is more common in people above age of 40 years.
  • genetic factors, trauma, other chemical carcinogens, and x-ray radiation.
  • A long-term Sun Exposure is one of the main cause of bowen's disease.
  • The ionizing radiation may also affect the skin pigmentation, which may lead to bowen's disease.

Symptoms of Bowens Disease

Some common Symptoms of Bowens Disease :-

  • The patch or patches grow very slowly.
  • There will be wart-like growth in the skin and bleeding may occur.
  • Flat, scaly, red and slightly raised red patches.
  • The edges of each patch are irregular but distinct from the surrounding skin.
  • The patches can affect any part of the body, but commonly occur on the lower leg.
  • The patches present no symptoms, so they are often overlooked.

Treatment of Bowens Disease

  • The treatment of bowen's disease with liquid nitrogen is found very effective for fast recovery. This may be suitable for small or flat lesions.
  • The lesion is scraped off the skin. It may also be used with cauterisation, where the skin is lightly burnt with and electric current. Recurrence is slightly more likely than with surgery.
  • In many cases, the patient undergoes two or more forms of treatment, depending on their individual needs.
  • In this technique, lesion is destroyed with intense cold. This type of treatment has a high success rate.
  • This cytotoxic cream applied may be applied for several weeks on the affected area.
  • A special type of light is used to destroy the lesion.
  • Applied to the lesion to kill its cells.








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