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Skin Cancer Treatment in Israel

Thu, 12/06/2012 - 14:08 Oncology
Skin Cancer Treatment in Israel

There are three types of skin cancer:

  • Basal cell carcinoma
  • Squamous cell carcinoma
  • Melanoma


This type of cancer can usually be diagnosed by through photos or during a visual examination of the skin. If the formation looks like a basal cell carcinoma, the patient can be immediately referred for Mohs surgery. During this procedure skin layers are progressively removed and examined until malignant cells are no longer detected. The cost of Mohs includes histopathology and postoperative consultation. Stitches (cosmetic) are normally removed 10 to 12 days following the surgery.

Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC)

The main cause of SCC is cumulative exposure to UV light (including tanning beds). This type of cancer cannot be diagnosed by observation alone, so a work up is required. It will include the following investigations:

  • Initial dermatologist consultation
  • Biopsy and histopathology
  • Blood tests (SMAC, lipid profile, liver serology, electrolyte levels, coagulation factors, and tumor markers)
  • PET CT scan
  • CT scan (optional)
  • Dermatological surgeon consultation

Depending on the findings, your treating dermatologist may refer you to one of the following: Mohs surgery, electrosurgery or cryosurgery.


In cases of suspected melanoma the screening program is identical to that of squamous cell carcinoma. If the diagnosis is confirmed, the best place for treatment is Sheba Tel Hashomer Hospital’s Ella Institute (the National Melanoma Institute), headed by world-renowned specialist Prof Jacob Schachter.

Resection can be performed if the tumor is localized; in cases of metastatic melanoma, neoadjuvant therapy will be required. The Ella Institute operates according to the foremost protocols in the field.

TIL Therapy for Melanoma

It is also possible to undergo TIL (tumor-infiltrating lymphocyte, also called ACT or adoptive cell transfer) therapy in Israel. During TIL, specialists remove some of the patient’s immune-systems cell, modify them and insert them back so they can attack the malignant cells.

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