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POssible skin cancer - this can't be right, can it?

(14 Posts)
PasstheTwiglets Fri 03-Jun-11 23:07:02

My dad has a weird thing on his nose and the GP said that there's a faint possibilty that it is skin cancer but not to worry because if it is then it's not life-threatening. He has to put some stuff on it to see if it heals and then go back in Augsut.

This just seems odd to me - surely all skin cancer is life-threatening if left untreated, yes? Why aren't they taking a biopsy of it? It all seems a bit too casual to me hmm

sharbie Fri 03-Jun-11 23:08:15

may depend on age - my nan had a thing on her leg which was taken off.she was in her 70s though so it wasn't v fast growing.

PacificDogwood Fri 03-Jun-11 23:10:38

Rodent ulcer aka basal cell carcinoma, quite common in older people, slow growing, can be removed locally.

I presume your father's GP must think it is likely NOT a BCC and will heal up?? A review in a month or 2 does not sound unreasonable, unless it were growing.

PacificDogwood Fri 03-Jun-11 23:11:40

And sorry, didn't answer, most skin cancers are not life threatening. Melanoma is bad news, but is the rarest form.

Cheeruploveitmightneverhappen Fri 03-Jun-11 23:13:10

Not if it's a rodent ulcer (basal cell carcinoma). Can't do links on this phone but a quick Google might be reassuring.

Cheeruploveitmightneverhappen Fri 03-Jun-11 23:14:02

Cross posts with a few!

PasstheTwiglets Fri 03-Jun-11 23:14:08

Thanks for that! The link you sent though, Dogwood, says that a biopsy would usually be done so I don't understand why one isn't!

nancy75 Fri 03-Jun-11 23:14:45

My In laws are Australian, they are frequently popping to the doctor to get a little cancer removed (their words). It seems that there are types which can be treated quickly and under local anasthetic(sp??)

PacificDogwood Fri 03-Jun-11 23:18:45

I think if you are worried mention your concerns to your dad and/or his GP.
It is impossible to advise on here, but I have in the past given somebody an antibiotic +/- steroid cream to see if a crusty lesion disappears. If it does, wonderful. If not, you've not lost anything with a BCC. Their 'common' name, Rodent Ulcer, comes from when people had these things for 10/20/30 years and they grew huge.
Also taking a biopsy from a nose, particularly tip of nose, can be quite disfiguring and your dad's Gp might have weighed pros and against cons and decided on watchful waiting in the first instance.
Like I said, if you have concerns, you'd need to tackle it in RL.
Hope it all settles nicely smile.

PasstheTwiglets Fri 03-Jun-11 23:21:03

Thanks, Dogwood (and everyone else), you've been very helpful! Can#t talk to him about it as he will no doubt freak out (he's very 'head in the sand' about such things) but I will talk to my mum about it and get her to sort it out.

Superfly Fri 03-Jun-11 23:28:25

My Dad had a growth on his cheek - and like your Dad was told it was non-life threatening cancer. He had it removed and had to go back a couple of weeks after to get results of a biopsy too - which was all ok. That was almost a year ago and he is fine.

ambisextrous Mon 06-Jun-11 09:38:00

Er..the doctor is not saying the right thing. He is too casual. Only a biopsy can tell you what kind it is. The odds are that it is harmless.

I had a skin cancer on my nose. Not melanoma, not basal, but squamous, and yes, it can kill you.

My doctor most definitely interested in how long I'd had it - about 8 weeks. I had a biopsy and a result in 2 days. The biopsy was not disfiguring; I was referred to dermatologist on the spot, but the MOHs surgery 4 weeks later had the potential to be so; they cut and cut until there's no cancer, or nose, left.

Everything went well; as it turned out the dermatologist had scooped out all the cancer at the biopsy stage. I will still have to go for check ups as these cancers can and do come back.

What I suppose I'm saying is biopsy. Now.

jjgirl Mon 06-Jun-11 12:57:25

my latest treatment for a BCC in Australia was just some cream to rub on it for a month and then it scabbed over and disappeared. much better than the surgery i had had for one previously.

PasstheTwiglets Mon 06-Jun-11 14:02:34

jjgirl, how did they know it was a BCC, did they just go on sight?

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