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Rebecca B’s Skin Cancer Journey

"This skin cancer journey was an eye-opener, and I am deeply grateful for the unwavering support and quality of care provided by all physicians and clinical teams involved."
My Skin Cancer Journey with Basal Cell Carcinoma
Discovery and Diagnosis:

In my early 30s, I noticed a patch on my décolletage, located about 2 inches below my collarbone. It was flakey, didn’t resemble a pimple, and refused to heal despite various ointments. At the time I was overwhelmed with a newborn and was pregnant with my second child, so I initially shrugged it off. However, as time passed, the patch gradually grew, occasionally bleeding. Amidst the chaos of motherhood, I eventually realized its alarming growth. Unsure if it was due to hormonal changes or simply being preoccupied, the spot seemed to be expanding rapidly. Subsequently, I visited my dermatologist (perhaps the second or third time in my life), leading to a biopsy and the distressing discovery of Basal Cell Carcinoma, necessitating its removal. However, due to my advanced pregnancy, the procedure was postponed until after my baby was born. At my procedure planning appointment, I was advised to consult a Mohs surgeon to ensure complete cancer removal and clear surrounding tissue. This surprise turn of events shattered my initial perception of a simple procedure.

The Procedure(s):

Due to the conspicuous location of the cancer on my upper chest, I decided to undergo revision surgery with a plastic surgeon to address the sizable scar that would inevitably result from the Mohs procedure. On the day of my Mohs surgery, I underwent a comprehensive procedure involving three collaborative physicians – from the initial surgeon to the dermatologist’s approval of full removal, culminating in an outpatient session at the plastic surgeon’s clinic. There, additional skin was excised, and the wound meticulously closed through stitching.

Lesson Learned:

This skin cancer journey was an eye-opener, and I am deeply grateful for the unwavering support and quality of care provided by all physicians and clinical teams involved.  Reflecting on this experience, it was an invaluable, yet challenging lesson learned. What began as a minor inconvenience evolved into an intricate and prolonged process that left behind a fading scar that serves as a daily reminder in the mirror for me to be more proactive in taking care of my skin and overall health.

Today, I diligently undergo biannual skin checks with Dr. Lisa Pruett and prioritize sun protection measures – sunscreen, hats, sleeves – and limiting my exposure to the sun as much as possible. While my personal encounter with skin cancer wasn’t life-threatening, it left a lasting, disfiguring impact—one that could have been prevented.

Revival Dermatology is a comprehensive dermatology practice, family owned by two board certified physicians delivering a patient-centered, fully transparent approach to practicing medicine. We offer superior medical, surgical, and cosmetic procedures and treatments in a family friendly boutique-style environment. Our customized approach ensures the most effective, personalized skin care for patients of all ages.

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