The keratoacanthoma is a common cutaneous neoplasm that most often occurs on sun-exposed sites in light-skinned persons of middle age or older. It is considered the prototype of cutaneous pseudo-malignancies because it is a rapidly growing tumor with a histologic pattern resembling squamous cell carcinoma. It may be best viewed as an aborted malignancy that only rarely progresses into an invasive squamous cell carcinoma. It is most likely derived from hair follicle cells. The common type of keratoacanthoma and its many variants are discussed with emphasis on clinical and histologic features, biologic behavior, and response to therapy.