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Glossary: squamous cell carcinoma, Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota

squamous cell carcinoma

(SKWAY-mus sel KAR-sih-NOH-muh)

Cancer that begins in squamous cells, which are thin, flat cells that look like fish scales. Squamous cells are found in the tissue that forms the surface of the skin, the lining of the hollow organs of the body, and the passages of the respiratory and digestive tracts. Also called epidermoid carcinoma.