Basal cell carcinoma has a variable look, and the subtler forms can be tricky to distinguish from other non-cancerous spots you might see on your skin. Below are images that show some of this variation in appearance.


An open sore that bleeds, oozes, or crusts and remains open for several weeks
A reddish, raised patch or irritated area that may crust or itch but generally doesn’t hurt
A shiny pink, red, pearly white, or translucent bump (nodular BCC)
A pink growth with a raised border and crusted central indentation
A scar-like, white, yellow, or waxy area, often presenting with a poorly defined border

The following images show some more unusual presentations:

Fibroepithelioma of Pinkus, appearing as a skin-colored, firm, dome-shaped bump
Pigmented BCC in a darker-skinned individual
Linear BCC in an Asian person

Watermarked images courtesy of DermNetNZ,org. For more information, see https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/nz/legalcode