Learn about symptoms and diagnosis for this rare type of skin cancer. DFSP treatments include Mohs surgery, radiation and targeted therapy.
Dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans (DFSP) is a rare type of skin cancer. It starts in connective tissue cells in the middle layer of the skin (dermis).
Dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans might look like a pimple or feel like a rough patch of skin at first. As it grows, lumps of tissue (protuberans) may form near the surface of the skin. This skin cancer often forms on the arms, legs and trunk.
Dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans grows slowly and rarely spreads beyond the skin.
Tests and procedures used to diagnose dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans include:
Dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans treatment typically involves surgery to remove the cancer. Other treatments may be used to kill cancer cells that might remain after surgery.
Treatment options may include:
Mohs surgery. Mohs surgery is a type of surgery that involves cutting away thin layers of cancer-containing skin until only cancer-free tissue is left. After each layer of skin is removed, it's examined for signs of cancer. The process keeps going until there are no signs of cancer.
Mohs surgery may be helpful for treating larger cancers. Dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans tends to grow in an irregular shape that makes it hard to remove completely.