Laser microsurgery for superficial T1-T2 basal cell carcinoma of the eyelid margins

G. Bandieramonte, P. Lepera, D. Moglia, A. Bono, C. De Vecchi, F. Milani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Basal cell carcinoma (BCC), the most common malignancy of the eyelid margins, poses therapeutic problems. Surgery, radiation therapy, and cryotherapy are the currently accepted methods for the treatment of this affliction. To verify the technical and clinical effectiveness of the surgical laser method, a specific approach was developed by performing laser- combined procedures under microscopic control. Methods: A series of 26 patients underwent carbon dioxide (CO 2) laser microsurgical excision of 27 primary superficial BCCs of the eyelid margins. Eighteen tumors were T1 and 9 were T2. The lesions were located at the lid margins in 18 and at the canthus in 9 cases. The eyelash line was involved in all cases, whereas intermarginal space was involved n 17 cases, without extension to the conjunctival border. Six lesions were in the lacrimal region. Median linear extent of the lesion was 5 mm (range, 4-10 mm). Treatment was performed with the patient under local anesthesia in a Day Hospital regimen. The authors used the microscope- mounted CO 2 laser as a scalpel to excise the tumor mass, thus obtaining the specimen for histologic evaluation. The authors treated the deep and lateral resection margins with laser vaporization and left the wound bed to heal by secondary intention. Results: No significant complications were observed. As full-thickness eyelid resections were avoided, the authors noted conservation of lid function and cosmetic aspect in all patients; With a median follow-up of 73 months (range 18-118), only one patient had tumor recurrence after 22 months. This tumor, located at the outer canthus, had a second microsurgical laser excision, and the patient is disease free 51 months after the last treatment. Conclusions: Laser microsurgery appears to be a safe and effective treatment method for primary superficial T1 and T2 BCC of the eyelid margins without conjunctival extension.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1179-1184
Number of pages6
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1997

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology


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