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Will McCain's Melanoma Return?

Will McCain's Melanoma Return?

Republican Presidential candidate Sen. John McCain, who survived a melanoma health diagnosis and surgery eight years ago, had a growth removed from his upper right cheek yesterday. Both McCain and his dermatologist seem confident that the growth is not cancerous, but of course, the return of cancer is always a possibility.

If the 71-year-old senator’s growth isn’t a repeat of his melanoma health diagnosis, then what could it be? According to other top dermatologists, McCain’s growth is likely a seborrheic keratosis, which is a non-cancerous lesion that becomes more common with age. Granted, because McCain has had melanoma before, it increases his risk for new cancerous growths. However, his risk is only 15% higher than the general population’s for developing a new case of melanoma.

The removal of this growth and its subsequent biopsy are simply cautionary, standard measures, docters say. For patients with a history of melanoma, any skin changes are closely monitored.

What would be going through your mind if you were McCain right now? Do you think his age and health history affect his chances of becoming President? [WebMD]

Posted: 7/29/08