Multiple self-healing squamous epithelioma of Ferguson-Smith: observations in a Danish family covering four generations

Acta Derm Venereol. 2008;88(1):52-6. doi: 10.2340/00015555-0359.


Multiple self-healing squamous epithelioma of Ferguson-Smith (MSSE) is a rare autosomal dominantly inherited disease, almost exclusively reported in patients of Scottish origin, with recurrent, histologically malignant tumours that undergo spontaneous regression. We report clinical observations in a Danish family with 11 affected patients, which appears to be the first Scandinavian family published with the disease. Anamnestic data and data concerning age of onset, localization, number of tumours and treatment modalities were collected from the family and from medical records, and all living patients were examined. Detailed clinical findings in 6 patients are described, together with a summary of clinical data from all 11 affected family members. The mean age of onset in the family was 52.6 years (range 30-81 years). A total of 44 tumours, chiefly located in sun-exposed areas, were recorded and the average number of tumours per patient was 4 (range 1-23). 61.4% of the tumours were excised, 31.8% regressed spontaneously without treatment. MSSE may thus also affect patients of non-Scottish origin. The disease severity can vary greatly among patients and the onset can be at an advanced age. MSSE constitutes an important model for research into tumour biology.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Carcinoma, Squamous Cell / genetics*
  • Carcinoma, Squamous Cell / pathology
  • Denmark
  • Facial Neoplasms / genetics
  • Facial Neoplasms / pathology
  • Female
  • Genetic Predisposition to Disease
  • Humans
  • Keratoacanthoma / genetics*
  • Keratoacanthoma / pathology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local
  • Neoplasm Regression, Spontaneous
  • Pedigree
  • Skin Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Skin Neoplasms / pathology