Tags: Cancer | cancer | squamous cell | chemotherapy | prednisone

It's Good to Take a Closer Look

By    |   Tuesday, 29 Jul 2014 05:26 PM

I sometimes look at my hands a bit too closely, focusing on what I don’t like. I’ve been told that no one even notices the blemishes that I see, because no one else scrutinizes my hands like I do. But I can’t help it — I’m still self-conscious.
 
The problem is that there are eruptions of small, precancerous spots combined with tiny warts.
 
I hate to use the word — wart — because it reminds me of a witch’s hooked and deformed nose. But that is what they are: viral outbreaks triggered by my long-term use of prednisone, which suppresses the immune system, along with the damage to my skin from chemotherapy and prior sunburns.
 
Over the last few weeks, my attention kept going back to a tiny, slightly raised spot on my left hand. My dermatologist had treated it and the area around with cryotherapy, a process that freezes skin lesions — but it remained.
 
Similarly, I was suspicious of another spot on my left forearm. A doctor who had performed a Mohs surgery (a microscopic procedure that remove one layer of skin at a time) on another area, dismissed the spot is a keratoacanthoma — a skin lesion that may resolve on its own or may be squamous cell cancer in disguise.
 
The more I examined that spot, the more it looked like a similar area on my other arm that had turned out to be cancer.
 
Two weeks ago, I went into Boston to see a dermatologist who performed what is called a “punch biopsy,” to remove the whole area of skin. And yesterday I learned that both spots were, indeed, squamous cells. That is, cancer.
 
They are mostly gone, but one went a little deeper and one had spread a little further.
 
After they heal I will apply a chemotherapy cream called Efudex (fluorouracil). This will turn the areas very red, but then hopefully that will be the end of those spots.
 
It’s a good thing these things grow slowly, because I was the only one who noticed them. I call it my “squamous cell radar.”
 
Scrutinizing your skin can sometimes have a negative impact, but sometimes it turns out to be a good thing to do.

© 2017 NewsmaxHealth. All rights reserved.

 
1Like our page
2Share
Ronni-Gordon
I sometimes look at my hands a bit too closely, focusing on what I don’t like. I’ve been told that no one even notices the blemishes that I see, because no one else scrutinizes my hands like I do.
cancer, squamous cell, chemotherapy, prednisone
366
2014-26-29
Tuesday, 29 Jul 2014 05:26 PM
Newsmax Inc.
 

The information presented on this website is not intended as specific medical advice and is not a substitute for professional medical treatment or diagnosis. Read Newsmax Terms and Conditions of Service.

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved