What is Merkel Cell Carcinoma?

Merkel Cells



Merkel Cells are found in the top layer of the skin. These cells are very close to nerve endings.

 

Merkel Cell Carcinoma



Also called neuroendocrine carcinoma of the skin or trabecular cancer, is a very rare type of skin cancer that forms when Merkel cells grow out of control. Merkel cell carcinoma starts most often in areas of skin exposed to the sun, especially the head and neck, as well as the arms, legs, and trunk. Merkel cell carcinoma tends to grow quickly and to metastasize (spread). It usually spreads first to nearby lymph nodes and then may spread to lymph nodes or skin in distant parts of the body, lungs, brain, bones, or other organs.

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