Angiosarcoma of the scalp is a rare cancer which most commonly affects the elderly. This condition is characterized by bruise-like lesions that escalate to elevated, nodular, or ulcerated tumors. Extensive local growth is common and metastasis to regional lymph nodes and to the lungs may occur.
- Asymptomatic in early stages
- Persistent scalp ulcer
- Black-blue scalp nodule
- Bleeding from scalp lesion
- Scalp pain
The cause of angiosarcoma of the scalp is unknown, although several associations have been reported, including lymphedema, prior radiation treatment, and environmental exposures.
Angiosarcoma of the scalp is considered an aggressive cancer with an unfavorable prognosis. Without treatment,
the original tumor typically increases in size and may bleed or form an open sore (ulcer). Eventually, the tumor is likely to spread (metastasize) into nearby tissues or to other parts of the body, such as the lungs. The progression of this condition depends on the initial size of the tumor and whether there are multiple spots (multifocal lesions). Studies have found that, even with treatment, half of affected individuals survive for 15 to 22 months following diagnosis, and approximately one third survive for five years.