Lesion removed from Joe Biden’s chest was cancerous, says White House doctor

The site of the removal on President Biden's chest has “healed nicely”, said his doctor

March 04, 2023 02:25 am | Updated 10:08 am IST - WASHINGTON

U.S. President Joe Biden. File

U.S. President Joe Biden. File | Photo Credit: Reuters

A skin lesion removed from President Joe Biden's chest last month was a basal cell carcinoma — a common form of skin cancer — his doctor said on March 3, 2023, adding that no further treatment was required.

Kevin O’Connor, the White House doctor who has served as Mr. Biden’s longtime physician, said “all cancerous tissue was successfully removed” during the President’s routine physical on February 16.

Dr. O’Connor said the site of the removal on Mr. Biden’s chest has “healed nicely” and the President will continue regular skin screenings as part of his routine health plan.

Basal cells are among the most common and easily treated forms of cancer — especially when caught early. Dr. O’Connor said they don’t tend to spread like other cancers, but could grow in size, which is why they are removed.

Mr. Biden had “several localised non-melanoma skin cancers” removed from his body before he started his presidency, Dr. O’Connor said in his February 16 summary of the President’s health, noting it was well established that Mr. Biden spent a lot of time in the sun during his youth.

First lady Jill Biden in January had two basal cell lesions removed from her right eye and chest.

She said in an Associated Press interview last week that she’s now “extra careful” about sunscreen, especially when she’s at the beach.

Basal cell carcinoma is a slow-growing cancer that usually is confined to the surface of skin — doctors almost always can remove it all with a shallow incision — and seldom causes serious complications or becomes life-threatening.

The Bidens have long been advocates for fighting cancer. Their adult son Beau died in 2015 from brain cancer.

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