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Article
October 1952

MODES OF SPREAD OF CANCER OF SKIN

Author Affiliations

MADISON, WIS.; OREGON CITY, ORE.

From the Chemosurgery Clinic, Department of Surgery, Wisconsin General Hospital and the McArdle Memorial Laboratory for Cancer Research, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine (Dr. Mohs).

AMA Arch Derm Syphilol. 1952;66(4):427-439. doi:10.1001/archderm.1952.01530290003001
Abstract

DURING the past sixteen years more than three thousand cancers have been removed by means of the microscopically controlled excisions which characterize the method which we have termed "chemosurgery."1 A striking observation repeatedly made during the course of these excisions was that many external cancers exhibited irregular outgrowths which had not been detected by clinical visualization and palpation.

In some cases these "silent" extensions were due to a peculiar affinity of the cancer for some specific tissue structure which it would follow selectively for unexpectedly great distances. Some structures for which certain cancers showed particular affinity were the following: (1) dermis, (2) fascial planes, (3) periosteum, (4) perichondrium, (5) embryologic fusion planes, (6) nerve sheaths, (7) lymphatic vessels, and (8) blood vessels. In other cases no specific affinities were observed, but nevertheless irregular outgrowths were present, apparently as a result of the countless local variations in

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