A woman has revealed how an old acne scar on her nose turned into skin cancer that left her with a gaping hole in her face and made her feel so self-conscious, she couldn’t stand to look at herself in the mirror.
Marketing specialist Melissa Fife, 40, from Salt Lake City, Utah, first noticed an old scar on her nose was becoming irritated at the start of 2020, admitting that she was initially embarrassed about its appearance.
During the first few months of the year, the scar had begun to grow larger, and the skin around it began to flake and become raised.
Eager to resolve the issue as soon as possible, Melissa consulted with a plastic surgeon, 신사역 피부과 hoping that he would be able to reduce its appearance on her nose.
Much to her surprise however, he immediately recommended that she see a dermatologist, explaining that she was showing potential signs of skin cancer.
Within a week, Melissa had had a biopsy and received an official diagnosis of basal cell carcinoma skin cancer – the most commonly diagnosed skin cancer in the US.
Changes: A marketing specialist from Salt Lake City, Utah, has revealed how an irritated acne scar on her nose turned out to be skin cancer – after visiting a plastic surgeon to get it fixed
Shock: Melissa Fife, 40, was embarrassed by the appearance of her scar when it got bigger and irritated at the start of last year – however a plastic surgeon warned it could be skin cancer
Pain: A biopsy revealed that Melissa had basal cell carcinoma skin cancer – and she had to undergo surgery to cut the cancerous tissue from her nose, which left her with a huge wound
‘I’ve been working in experiential marketing for around a decade, and the majority of events I am required to work are outdoors,’ said Melissa.
‘I’m also an outdoor enthusiast – but I’ve always tried to wear a hat when possible and I wore high SPF sunscreens every day.
‘I had a small acne scar on my nose for a few years, but in early 2020, my scar started to get irritated.
Skin would flake off and it would scab easily.
‘The scar started to get larger and more deformed – I was embarrassed about how it looked. I thought it was purely cosmetic and that it was my fault that it kept getting bigger.
Treatment: Melissa’s cancer turned out to go deeper than doctors had though, so she had to undergo four surgeries to remove the cancerous tissue, with her wound becoming bigger and bigger each time
‘I decided to see a plastic surgeon for a consultation to find out what my options were for scar revision.
‘The surgeon only had to look at it for about 20 seconds to tell me that he thought it was skin cancer.
He recommended that I go to a dermatologist to get a biopsy.
‘I immediately scheduled an appointment, 닥터스피부과 and I received the biopsy results a few days later.
‘The results were conclusive – it was basal cell carcinoma skin cancer.’
Despite the diagnosis, Melissa was calm. She was reassured that the cancer had been found early and she knew she would be able to get treatment soon.
After the biopsy, she was scheduled for a small procedure called Mohs surgery – an operation done under local anesthetic, where the cancerous tissue is cut out.
Unfortunately, her cancer was deeper than doctors thought, and Melissa was told she would need to have four stages of this procedure on her nose.
Between surgeries, a large, open wound remained on her nose, which she had to cover with a bandage.
‘I was scheduled for a procedure called Mohs surgery,’ she recalled. ‘It entails cutting the cancerous skin out and examining it under a microscope to determine if all of the cancerous cells have been removed.
If the doctor sees the cancer extending outside the borders of the cut, he takes a larger cut of skin.
‘Each time this is done, it’s called a stage. I had to have four stages because my cancer extended further than originally thought.
‘The entire procedure lasted seven hours, then the doctor scheduled me for another surgery with a plastic surgeon the following week.’
On the mend: After her fourth surgery, Melissa had a skin graft taken from her collar bone, which doctors used to repair her nose
Day by day: While she was undergoing the multiple procedures, Melissa couldn’t bear to look at her wound, admitting that she feared it would be ‘too traumatic’
For the first few days following her surgery, Melissa found it too difficult to face looking at her wound, as she struggled to deal with the sudden change to her face.
Luckily, her family were incredibly supportive, and volunteered to help her so she didn’t have to look at her wound until she was ready.
After some days had passed, she decided that she needed to see the wound to understand 신사역 피부과 what she had been through.
Her last surgery was a reconstruction of her nose done by taking a skin graft from her collarbone.
<div class="art-ins mol-factbox floatRHS femail" data-version="2" id="mol-ba3e6010-0779-11ec-b5d0-033f65a382d3" website reveals how 'deformed' acne scar turned out to be SKIN CANCER