by Jason Wasserman MD PhD FRCPC
September 20, 2022
Acanthosis is term pathologists use to describe an increased number of specialized squamous cells on the surface of a tissue. The increased number of squamous cells causes the tissue to look thicker than normal when examined under the microscope. Another word for acanthosis is acanthotic.
Acanthosis is commonly seen in a layer of the skin called the epidermis. However, it can also be seen in a thin layer of tissue on the inside of the mouth and throat called the epithelium.
By itself, acanthosis is a non-cancerous change. However, acanthosis can be seen on the surface of some tumours made up of squamous cells.