Jump to content

Skin cancer risks question,..I am confused

Nurses   (5,957 Views 17 Comments)
by HeartsOpenWide HeartsOpenWide, RN (Member) Member

HeartsOpenWide is a RN and specializes in Ante-Intra-Postpartum, Post Gyne.

2 Articles; 26,515 Profile Views; 2,889 Posts

I am taking a practice NCLEX exam and one of the question is who is at greatest risk for developing skin cancer. The options are

a superficial scar tissue

seborrheic keratoses

numerous facial freckles

flesh-colored papules

I went with numerous facial factors thinking of people with fair skin and their increased risk for skin cancer. But the answer is a superficial scare tissue...hu? I did not know scar tissue can cause cancer...??

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Are you a credible source? Add your Credentials, Experience, etc.

346 Posts; 5,854 Profile Views

I just looked this up --

Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is the most common skin cancer and is also the most common cancer. It grows from the basal (bottom) layer of the epidermis (the outer layer of the skin). It almost always appears on sun-exposed skin, such as the forehead, hands, lips, or tops of the earlobes. BCC makes up about 80% of all non-melanoma skin cancers. There are three main types of BCC:

  • superficial basal cell carcinoma (sBCC) - often appears on the chest and upper body (torso) and possibly on the face. Commonly, it is a well-defined, scaly patch that looks similar to eczema. There is also often a thin, raised border that is pearl-coloured around the affected patch of skin.
  • nodular BCC - appears on areas exposed to the sun including the head and neck. It appears as an elevated bump of skin that is usually pearl-coloured or pink.
  • morpheaform BCC - appears as an ivory scar in areas that have never been injured or operated on. The tumour appears slightly raised and waxy, and is often white or yellowish in colour. The borders of the tumour are not distinct.

Maybe they are referring to pts @ risk of superficial basal cell carcinoma? That's a really tricky question. If thats the answer, it could have been worded better.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

HeartsOpenWide is a RN and specializes in Ante-Intra-Postpartum, Post Gyne.

2 Articles; 2,889 Posts; 26,515 Profile Views

Freckles.

yes, sorry typo.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

MelodyRNurse has 3 years experience and specializes in ED, Rehab, LTC.

255 Posts; 4,351 Profile Views

If the choice was superficial scar tissue in an area that had never been injured or operated on-then yes, but it only said superficial scar tissue? I probably would have chosen the Freckles option also. That is tricky.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

MIA-RN specializes in Med-Surg, ED.

245 Posts; 3,698 Profile Views

These are my thoughts:

superficial scar tissue: New and delicate tissue, easily injured and more susceptible to sunburn and damage. It doesn't cause cancer but is way more susceptible to damage/injury and therefore cancer.

seborrheic keratoses: I think this is just a form of eczema.

numerous facial freckles: Freckles aren't a cancer risk

flesh-colored papules: These can be anything. They can be basal cell carcinoma, which means the person already has the cancer and it is not a risk of developing it because they already have it.

*

I would love to see the rationales from this question.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Are you a credible source? Add your Credentials, Experience, etc.

2,801 Posts; 13,344 Profile Views

Do you have the *exact* wording of the question? Maybe this is one of those questions that's less about understanding cancer risk factors and more about matching the wording of the question to the answer. That is, does it ask "which of the following conditions indicates that a patient is at risk for developing skin cancer" "which of the following skin conditions is at risk for developing into skin cancer" " which of the following skin abnormalities is a risk factor for developing skin cancer"?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Are you a credible source? Add your Credentials, Experience, etc.

167 Posts; 5,195 Profile Views

I have seen a couple of research papers regarding scar skin carcinoma's, it is pretty rare but it does happen

for the NCLEX remember not to add anymore information than is in the answers and question (such as what you have said about freckles and thinking "fair skin", because i have seen darker tones who have also had freckles, harder to see but they are there)

i tried finding the information about this but i don't have it anymore. good luck!!

Edited by RNLola035

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Are you a credible source? Add your Credentials, Experience, etc.

6,372 Posts; 34,593 Profile Views

The answer is freckles. I have lived this, researched it extensively and present on the topic of skin cancer regularly. I don't have time to look up and post my references right now. I'll do that later if you like, but I am 100% certain that the answer is freckles.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

WalkieTalkie is a RN and specializes in CVICU.

674 Posts; 7,139 Profile Views

I don't know, I would have also picked freckles. That being said, sometimes those NCLEX review books have wrong answers. For example, I once had a question about hypoglycemia s/s. I picked one of the answers that had "confusion" listed in it. When I looked up why that wasn't the answer, the darn book actually said that confusion was not a symptom of hypoglycemia. EXCUSE ME?

Yeah, anyone who has ever had a patient with hypoglycemia or experienced it themselves knows that's not true! It was also listed as a symptom in my med surg book and all the nurses were laughing at that dumb question.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Are you a credible source? Add your Credentials, Experience, etc.

6,372 Posts; 34,593 Profile Views

I am taking a practice NCLEX exam and one of the question is who is at greatest risk for developing skin cancer. The options are

a superficial scar tissue

seborrheic keratoses

numerous facial freckles

flesh-colored papules

I went with numerous facial factors thinking of people with fair skin and their increased risk for skin cancer. But the answer is a superficial scare tissue...hu? I did not know scar tissue can cause cancer...??

OK, I did a little research.

Your question is a general one, and doesnt specify a type of skin cancer. That's a little misleading, because the risk factors for basal cell carcinoma are a little different from the risk factors for squamous cell carcinoma, which are also a little different from the risk factors for melanoma.

The following article: (Humzah, D. (2003, July). Clinical update. Clinical aspects of skin cancer. Primary Health Care, 13(6), 27-31. Retrieved March 24, 2009, from CINAHL Plus with Full Text database.) lists the risk factors for all 3 types of skin cancer. The only one of your choices listed is freckles.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
×