Merkel cell carcinoma: symptoms, diagnostics and treatment

Korovin S., Kolesnichenko V.O., Kukushkina M.M., Palivets A., Ostafiichuk V.

Summary. Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC) is characterized by an aggressive course and high rates of recurrence and metastasis. Every year just in the U.S. there are nearly 1,500 cases. Despite the rarity of this disease, 5-years survival rate for local process is around 63–67%, while in the presence of distant metastases — just 1–8%. The article presents the proven etiological factors of MCC: ultraviolet radiation, polyomavirus MCPyV, immune suppression. Contemporary approaches to the diagnosis and treatment of MCC are analyzed. Wide excision with a space from the edge of the tumor not less than 2–3 cm is a standard of surgical treatment. Due to the high sensitivity of the MCC to radiotherapy, it is used in the adjuvant regimen in a total dose 40–60 Gray. Despite the low efficacy of chemotherapy in this disease, research on the use of targeted drugs is ongoing.
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