Mother Mistakes Skin Cancer for Blemish
Posted on 28 December 2017
An all-too-common occurance: A mother of two was left with a hole in her face after dismissing skin cancer as a “stubborn” blemish.
Keely Jones was advised to see a dermatologist after her beautician noticed the red blemish on her face, but she ignored her concerns. The 40-year-old North Carolina native was convinced that the bump on her temple was just a spot, as she’d rarely exposed her skin to the sun.
“I thought it was just a stubborn one, so I just continued to pick it, and every time, it would just scab over and bleed,” Jones said. “After seeing the dermatologist, they decided to do a biopsy on my temple, as it looked concerning. A week later, I received a call and was told that I had cancer.”
BASAL CELL CARCINOMA
Jones was diagnosed with basal cell carcinoma, a skin cancer that can cause extreme disfigurement if left untreated
The growth, which left Jones with a hole the size of a nickel, was removed and required over 20 stitches to close.
“Skin cancer can happen to anyone — I hardly used tanning beds, and always avoided the sun, and I still managed to end up with skin cancer.”
She said that even though the spot was so small, “I had to have removals three times to make sure all of the cancer was gone.”
Jones explained further: “I then had to have three more surgeries to remove the spot from my temple and to get all of the cancer out. When it was removed, and I saw the massive hole on my temple, I was so shocked — the spot was so little, but they needed to remove so much more skin. The hole was then stitched together, but luckily I had these stitches removed just last week, and it’s unlikely that I will need any more surgery. I’ll still have to go for checkups, though, because the chance of having another cancerous spot is now higher.”
She is now using her story to raise the awareness of others.
Skin cancer specialist and Little Leaves sun protective clothing co-founder Dr. Carlos Gomez-Meade, “Cases like this happen every day in my practice. A small spot appears to be a blemish. If it doesn’t heal, and continues to scab and bleed, schedule an appointment with your dermatologist immediately.”
Mohs Surgery is the most common treatment for skin cancer, ensuring that all of the cancer is removed. Dr. Gomez-Meade the specialized skin cancer procedure that allows for the highest cure rate and the smallest removal of tissue.