Last month a nurse posted this selfie on her Facebook page with the following message:
If anyone needs a little motivation to not lay in the tanning bed and sun here ya go! This is what skin cancer treatment can look like. Wear sunscreen and get a spray tan. You only get one skin and you should take care of it. Learn from other people’s mistakes. Don’t let tanning prevent you from seeing your children grow up. That’s my biggest fear now that I have a two year old little boy of my own.
I hope a picture is worth a thousand words!
Her skin lesions are not from the cancer, but rather from the treatment, I suspect. A topical cream, imiquimod, is often used to treat superficial basal cell carcinomas such as hers. Usually, the side effect is like having a sunburn; but some people have a more severe reaction with blistering and scabbing.
She admitted to using tanning beds 4-5 times a week in high school.
Related post: Tanning beds are dangerous to your health
Luckily, however, she has not been diagnosed with melanoma.
For more information about melanoma and the dangers of UV exposure, please watch this YouTube from Dr. Mike Evans: