Skin cancer is one of the most common types of cancer. The US First Lady Jill Biden is now affected. Her cancerous tissue was removed in a skin operation. Skin cancer cases have also been increasing in Germany for years. Discovered in time, light skin cancer is very curable.
Not only her husband Joe, but also First Lady Jill Biden makes headlines: she underwent cancer surgery. All cancerous tissue has been “successfully” removed from the affected areas, White House Medical Doctor Kevin O’Connor said. The surgery went well. The diagnosis: white skin cancer.
During a routine skin cancer screening, the First Lady was found to have “a small lesion above her right eye,” according to her spokeswoman. The procedure also removed a lesion on the left eyelid, which is being examined in the laboratory. Another “area of concern” was also discovered on the left side of the 71-year-old’s chest. The tissue was also removed – a basal cell carcinoma was confirmed. Here, too, the entire cancerous tissue was successfully removed – there were no remnants of skin cancer cells at the edges of the lesion.
The most important risk factor for non-melanoma skin cancer is excessive exposure of the skin to ultraviolet (UV) rays. “It doesn’t matter whether this comes from the sun, from the solarium or other artificial UV sources,” writes the Center for Cancer Registry Data. In Germany, light skin cancer affects around 200,000 people every year.
Those affected include not only sun worshipers who prefer to spend their free time and holidays in bathing suits on a beach. For tanning fans, dermatologists have been praying down the mantra of the right sun protection for years:
The advice to generally avoid the blazing sun and to prefer shady spots comes up more and more often. Dermatologist Manuel Cornely said it clearly in an interview with FOCUS online: “If you want to protect your skin from cancer, the precursors and even more aging, you have to avoid direct sun.”
The light exposure of decades adds up, every sunburn makes a difference. Because: “The skin does not forget,” explained Cornely. With advanced age, photodamage such as pigment spots, actinic keratoses, but also white and black skin cancer becomes more apparent. Diagnosed in time, the chances of recovery are very good, especially for non-melanoma skin cancer.
The change above the right eye of the First Lady was found in a routine examination for skin cancer screening. The intervention also confirmed for this area that it was a so-called basal cell carcinoma, said O’Connor.
A basal cell carcinoma, or basal cell carcinoma, is a tumor that, unlike a melanoma, does not usually metastasize. Basalioma is also known as light or white skin cancer. Light skin cancer is divided into two categories:
White skin cancer mainly occurs on parts of the body that are particularly exposed to the sun. Contrary to what the name might suggest, white skin cancer does not form bright patches. A basal cell carcinoma is usually skin-colored to reddish and nodular or tumor-like. Scaling areas of skin with a border of small nodules are also typical. The tumor may ooze and bleed.
Squamous cell carcinomas, on the other hand, vary greatly in their appearance: they can appear wart-like or as weeping ulcers. The tumors often appear as ragged, scaly, or crusted patches.
Black skin cancer (malignant melanoma) does not have a uniform appearance. Flat, nodular, or raised dark, brown, or black spots are common.
The White House medic added to the First Lady’s health: “We will monitor the area closely while it heals, but assume that no further intervention will be necessary.” The good news: Unlike black skin cancer, both subtypes of the white skin cancer to the experts at the German Cancer Research Center “show very good prospects of recovery”. The 5-year survival rates are between 96 and 100 percent.
The case of Lady Biden shows the importance of early detection through skin screening. However, each individual can also keep a close eye on their own body.
According to the ABCDE rule, even laypeople can tell whether a skin spot or birthmark can become a cancer focus. If you discover one or more of these abnormalities, you should definitely have the area evaluated by a dermatologist.
A = asymmetry
B = boundary
C = Colour (Farbe)
D = diameter r
E = grandeur and development