Tests and diagnosis

By Mayo Clinic Staff

To diagnose basal cell carcinoma, your doctor may:

  • Examine your skin. Your doctor will examine the suspicious area on your skin. He or she will also look over the rest of your body for other unusual areas of skin.
  • Remove a sample of skin for testing. Your doctor may do a skin biopsy, which involves removing a small sample of the unusual skin for testing in a laboratory. This will reveal whether you have skin cancer and, if so, what type of skin cancer. The type of skin biopsy you undergo will depend on your situation.
Sep. 07, 2013