This lesion, partially hidden under the nail, had been present and slowly growing for 10 years.
Subungual squamous cell carcinoma

Rarely, squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) may occur in the periungual/subungual area. See also squamous cell carcinoma. HPV has been found in up to 80% of lesions and it has been theorized that these lesions in fact may have been verruca for many years and only subsequently underwent malignant change. HPV 16 is most common.


A hyperkeratotic or verrucous, periungual, or subungual lesion treated for years as a verruca is characteristic. Pain, swelling, inflammation, redness, bleeding, and nail deformation are common. Men 50-80 years of age and a single finger are most typical.


Some have recommended amputation, however, these SCCs tend to be less aggressive and most recommended Mohs surgery. Radiation therapy is a good alternative for patients who are poor surgical candidates.

Additional Pictures

Subungual squamous cell carcinoma


JAAD August 2013 Volume 69, Issue 2, Pages 253–261.e1

SCC Periungual from JAAD September 2014 Volume 71, Issue 3, Pages e65–e67


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