Malignant Change in Chronic Irritation: A Case series
BACKGROUND: Chronic irritation is a known cause of malignant change in humans. It is believed that at least a minimum of five years is needed for the evolution of the illness.
OBJECTIVE: To present cases of consecutive squamous cell malignant change in patients with various irritations, and to highlight that these cases are not too uncommon in our environment.
METHODS: Case reports of patients with definitive treatments offered. Patients had amputation done after incisional biopsies were done to determine the mitotic status of the lesions.
RESULTS: The three patients presented late. All had lower limb affectation. Conservatism was difficult, all of them ending up with amputation of the affected limbs. One of them had inguinal lymph node metastasis after the amputation, signifying advanced disease, but unfortunately had to leave
hospital because she could not cope with the financial demands of treatment.
CONCLUSION: Malignant change from chronic irritations can occur under five years. Education might help early presentation and improved outcome. Our hospitals should provide for the treatment of these group of patients despite their financial status.
WAJM 2010; 29(1): 38–40.
Key words: Chronic irritation; malignant change; squamous cells cancer; amputation; conservatism.