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McCain needs frequent checks for skin cancer

July 28, 2008 |  3:19 pm

Mccain_4If you look at pictures taken over the years, presumed Republican presidential nominee Sen. John McCain of Arizona is frequently photographed with a bandage on his face. And that's unlikely to change. A long-term skin cancer survivor, McCain was spotted today with a bandage on his right cheek, which he said was from a biopsy performed by his dermatologist this morning. The Los Angeles Times reported that McCain said he was fine and that the biopsy was routine.

McCain was diagnosed with malignant melanoma in 1993 and has had four cancerous lesions removed since then. Compared with people in the general population, patients diagnosed with melanoma have a much higher rate of developing additional melanomas in the future. For that reason, many melanoma survivors see a skin doctor for check-ups every few months.

McCain is at high risk for future melanomas because of his history. Melanomas on the face are not as lethal as those found on the neck or scalp, according to a recent study. Men, however, have a lower survival rate than women.

The American Cancer Society has more information on melanoma diagnosis and treatment.

-- Shari Roan

Photo credit: AP/Eric Draper. This photo was taken of McCain after a biopsy in 2000.

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Comments (19)

In the eyes of the LA Times (looking through their left wing lense) this is more newsworthy than John Edwards having an affair while his wife is dying. Unreal.

Perhaps this is why your value is quickly approaching zero.

McGrumpy '08. He will go seismic on everything including the sun.

What do you mean we can't invade it? They have all our energy!!

Quit this already; my husband has to have checked as he has had the same problem; he has had this done for over 20 years and he is fine. You are just looking for problems for McCain. Why not report on Obama going in for treatment on his bad back after he returned to the U.S. What could his health problem be? There are lots of serious health problems related to bad backs, so why not write about those since you are so inent on trying to bring down McCain? Don't be so darn bias; we want to know of the troubles Obama is having with his back.

Mark my words, old leather face is on his way out. I have been telling neo-cons for months "your arms are too short to box with God". McGramps and no other faux news tool can stop a divinely ordained candidate.

This is nonsense.

If the pictures are so common of McCain with a bandaid, why cant you find a decent one that is not all blurry?

This is a routine f/u procedure. Los Angeles Times I do hope you will be following up to make sure what results are. Melanoma is one of the most serious form of skin cancer. Since he is running for President I do feel voters do have a right to know the results of biopsy. Since he is approximately eight years out from the diagnosis, the high risks have decreased. But chances do exist. His past history includes other other melanoma lesions

This does need f/u for results. This proof should be actual pathology results. Anything less means nothing.

This is a joke. My 85 year old grandfather and 60 year old father-in-law have the same thing. It's very routine, and it a disgrace to publish this garbage.

Wow. Does it surprise anyone that Obama friendly journalists are now trying to say. "Dont vote for McCain, hes not as pretty". Just goes to show you the mind set of journalists these days. The guy has cancer concerns ans now he's being picked on for it by journalists, talk about low class trash!

The above photo is very old and the skin cancer news is also old news.
I think it's OK for McCain to run for President as long as he can retain good makeup artists

Maybe he should draw a purple heart on his little band-aid. Afterall, the Swift Boat Veterans for Lies were quick to hit Kerry on his war record. Maybe someone should hit Mcain a little bit under the belt too. All is fair in love and war.

On topic, if he needs frequent medical checkups, how is he going to handle the physical rigors of being a President? I'd hate for him to croak and the VP to take over, whoever it's going to be.

The law requires that you must must be at least 35 years old to be president of the US.

So why isn't there an upper age limit.
Surely if we elect someone to the office we expect him to finish out his term.
The average life expectancy of the american male is 75 years.
That means the odds are that McCain ,if elected,may not live to see the end of his term.
He already has a history of skin cancer.

We have too many old people in the US government. Some old members can barely walk on their own. In private industry people over 60 often have to step aside for much younger people with new ideas.

Why do we have so many old people sitting in the top jobs of government.

Remember when Regan kept falling asleep at public functions?
Old people need their naps.

i doubt he'd be able to survive 4 years as president. a vote for him is a vote for his vice president

it's completely outrageous we have a presidential candidate who will never have a stable bill of health.

are we so asleep to elect a president who may not survive his 4 year term?

there are far better candidates we had to choose from, why did we pick the worst?

How is this considered news worthy???? Senator McCain is from Arizona - the state with the highest rate of skin cancer in the nation. He obviously is resposible and gets it checked regularly. I rather have the news be about the issues in the campaign not about a bandaid on the Senator's face!

Many voters have concerns about John McCain's heath. Many wonder, and mainstream media refuses to ask, if John McCain suffers from PTSD from his the five years of captivity, including three years in solitary and torture so extreme that, as he put it, "broke" him to the point he attempted suicide several times.

One of the most important considerations with regard to medical predictions of future PTSD, is how the initial trauma was dealt with.

In 1999, Dr. Michael M. Ambrose, director of the Robert E. Mitchell Center for Prisoner of War Studies, was contacted by John McCain to conduct a mental health review. The quality of the review is a matter of dispute as some say Dr. Ambrose did a full medical exam of the patient and others say the doctor only reviewed McCain's old medical records.

After the evaluation was completed, John McCain's 1999 campaign released a statement by Dr. Ambrose, which stated:

"McCain has never been diagnosed with or treated at the center for a psychological or psychiatric disorder (The term PTSD first appeared in the American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders in 1980, years after John McCain's initial military medical evaluations.). He has been subject to an extensive battery of psychological tests and following his last examination in 1993, we judged him to be in good physical and mental health.''

The McCain campaign press release included a statement by Dr. Ambrose, which reveals John McCain created a fantasy world in order to escape the reality of captivity and torture. They further stated McCain always heard the guards coming with his food, but "was often so much in his private world, that he strongly resented their coming around and bringing him back to reality by intruding. He was enjoying his fantasies so much."

"findings suggest that it is less what happens at the time of a trauma (e.g., disrupted encoding) that predicts PTSD than what occurs thereafter (i.e., persistent avoidance)." [John Briere, Ph.D., Catherine Scott, M.D., and Frank Weathers, Ph.D.]

The keyword here is 'persistent avoidance' which was evidenced by the findings of Dr. Ambrose.

"The presence of dissociative symptoms soon after exposure to trauma has been found to predict the subsequent development of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)" [Gary Tucker, MD, Published in Journal Watch Psychiatry October 9, 2002]

"The amount of dissociation that follows directly after a trauma predicts PTSD" [American Psychiatric Association]

"Individuals that are more likely to dissociate during a traumatic event are considerably more likely to develop chronic PTSD" [Brown, Scheflin and Hammond (1998). Memory, Trauma Treatment, And the Law.]

"In several studies, dissociation at the time of a trauma (peritraumatic dissociation) has been found to predict symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder at follow-up assessments' [Michael W. Otto, PhD, Published in Journal Watch Psychiatry July 21, 2005]

" early numbing contributed to the prediction of later PTSD" [Center for the Treatment and Study of Anxiety, Psychiatry Department, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine]

"Peritraumatic dissociation is frequently considered to be a risk factor for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)" [Doris C. Breh PhD, Department of Psychotraumatology, Psychosomatic University Hospital Heidelberg, Heidelberg, Germany]

Ambrose later told the Associated Press "He had a very healthy way of dealing with his experiences." One of the examiners even noted that McCain had improved his ability to control his infamous temper due to his years of torture and captivity.

Anyone familiar with Workers' Compensation or personal injury cases understands full well you can pull the right strings or pay a 'company' doctor to say anything necessary to help your client.

It is worth noting the1999 McCain campaign only released a small number of redacted medical records, the pages were not allowed to be photocopied and only a few select news organizations were privy to what few medical records were made available under these conditions.

John McCain has a consistent history of out of control outbursts of anger and even admits an adverse reaction to the sound of jangling keys. Author Robert Timberg, who McCain has said "knows more about me than I do," calls these episodes "an eruption of temper out of all proportion to the provocation" and says they are a result of Vietnam coming "back to haunt him."

VA studies have shown time and again that POWs suffer a much higher risk of developing PTSD than combat veterans. Even so, to this date, mainstream media still has not pushed for full disclosure of John McCain's military medical records and refuses to ask the one simple question:

'Is John McCain emotionally fit for the most stressful job in our country, the President of the United States, our Commander in Chief?"


A cancer patient? 71 years old? (me too). A Navy veteran( me too). I have no
health problems, besides old age. But I would not offer myself for President because I would not live out the first term. Be very suspicious of his choice for
vice-president.

wow ... he's gonna die soon...

Politics aside, this is a good reminder for people with light skin to wear a hat or a bit of suncreen on the face if it's going to be an hour in the sun. Millions of people will pay attention b/c someone famous is involved.

Some people go overboard with the sunblock - some sun is good for you, and your skin is going to look like garbage anyway when you're 65 - but the point where you get a burn that peels off is over the edge. We all expect to and usually do live much longer now, so slow developing things like skin cancer are more common.

Not mentioned is that time out in the sun is good for your soul. But people want to reduce life to dollars and chemicals. It ain't about that.



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