White House announces President Biden had cancerous skin lesion removed from chest during physical

White House physician Dr. Kevin O’Connor has issued a report that shows President Biden was treated for a cancerous skin lesion on his chest during his annual physical, and “All cancerous tissue was successfully removed.”

(Video Credit: ABC News)

The physical took place two weeks ago and positive results were announced. O’Connor’s report stated that the president is a “healthy, vigorous, 80-year-old male, who is fit to successfully execute the duties of the Presidency.”

It also noted that “One small lesion on the President’s chest was excised today and sent for traditional biopsy. Results are pending.”

An update by the physician was sent out on Friday to the White House. It evidently showed the lesion was cancerous. It was the most common form of skin cancer and no other treatment was necessary after its removal.

The memorandum from the doctor was addressed to White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre.

“On 16 February, at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, the President had a skin lesion removed from his chest as part of his comprehensive health assessment. This tissue was sent for traditional biopsy,” the memo stated.

“As expected, the biopsy confirmed that the small lesion was basal cell carcinoma. All cancerous tissue was successfully removed. The area around the biopsy site was treated presumptively with electrodesiccation and curettage at the time of biopsy. No further treatment is required,” it continued.

“Basal cell carcinoma lesions do not tend to ‘spread’ or metastasize, as some more serious skin cancers such as melanoma or squamous cell carcinoma are known to do. They do, however, have the potential to increase in size, resulting in a more significant issue as well as increased challenges for surgical removal,” the memo explained.

“The site of the biopsy has healed nicely and the President will continue dermatologic surveillance as part of his ongoing comprehensive healthcare,” it concluded.

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Biden has had several non-melanoma skin cancers removed in the past before he became president, according to his physician. The BBC reports that in a 2021 summary of his health, O’Connor wrote that the president’s lesions had been excised and “there are no areas suspicious for skin cancer at this time.”

The president’s health is under close scrutiny as he prepares for an expected run for a second presidential term in 2024. He is the oldest sitting president in history.

Basal and squamous cell carcinoma are the two most common forms of skin cancer, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Diagnosed in 3.6 million Americans every year, it is the most frequently occurring form of all cancers, according to the Skin Cancer Foundation. It is slow-growing, curable, and causes minimal damage if caught and treated early.

In January, first lady Jill Biden had three lesions removed, with two of them later testing positive for basal cell carcinoma. Those two lesions were located on her right eye and chest.

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

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