Self-treatment of a basal cell carcinoma with "black and yellow salve"

J Am Acad Dermatol. 2005 Sep;53(3):509-11. doi: 10.1016/j.jaad.2005.04.007.


Patients may seek "alternative" or "non-traditional" therapies for dermatologic problems, frequently in search of a miraculous cure. However, many of these medicaments contain unknown compounds with questionable benefit and a potential for significant harm. We describe a patient who developed a large ulceration on her nose after applying "black and yellow salves" obtained from Mexico in an attempt to self-treat a basal cell carcinoma.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Carcinoma, Basal Cell / drug therapy*
  • Complementary Therapies*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Nose Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Ointments*
  • Self Medication / adverse effects
  • Skin Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Skin Ulcer / chemically induced*


  • Ointments