- Emmy award-winner Kathy Sabine shares photos of her skin cancer scars on Twitter.
- The meteorologist is open about her journey, and thinks that showing her brutal wounds will make people be more careful.
- The Skin Cancer Foundation estimates that over 5 million cases of skin cancer are diagnosed in the United States every year, making it the most common cancer in the United States.
Better every day! 😀Channeling my inner Beth Dutton 👊🏼#Yellowstone 🤠 skin cancer in #Colorado is no joke and PS thank you for your overwhelming love and support😩 I am so humbled! See you soon!❤️ pic.twitter.com/axKjT3EEN2
— Kathy Sabine (@KathySabine9) July 18, 2022
Sabine, 57, of Denver, playfully compared herself to the feisty heiress in TV mega-hit Yellowstone, saying she’s doing “better every day,” and is open about what she’s been going through with fans. The Emmy award-winner had cancer removed from her nose and reconstructed with cartilage from her ear by Castle Rock Surgery and Advanced Dermatology dermatologists.
Kathy’s Skin Cancer Journey
Sabine told a source: “If this saves one person, who cares about vanity?” She acknowledges that the photos she shares of her wounds are graphic, but she feels that it’s important to expose people to the possibilities of what could happen to them.
Like many others, she never thought it would happen to her. She’s an avid sunscreen wearer and considers herself to be a relatively cautious person when it comes to sun exposure.
Sabine was scheduled for two operations: one was a Mohs procedure to remove the problem area, followed by plastic surgery that reconstructed her nose using her ear cartilage. There was an additional problem area discovered in her face while undergoing all of this that added complications to an already challenging battle.
Mohs surgery is a microscopically-controlled surgery where thin layers of skin cancer tissue are removed until the surgeon reaches clear tissue.
“You’re able to remove a very conservative margin around the cancer and study it in essentially real-time,” explains Dr. Sumaira Aasi, Professor of Dermatology and Director of Mohs and Dermatologic Surgery at Stanford. If, when the surgeon examines the tissue under the microscope, cancer is found, the surgeon goes back and removes some more tissue.
The idea is that by making the tiniest cuts and evaluating them microscopically, the surgeon knows for certain that all the cancer is out when the last piece of tissue proves to be clear. It is often done as an outpatient procedure with local anesthetic.
Understanding Skin Cancer
The Skin Cancer Foundation estimates that over 5 million cases of skin cancer are diagnosed in the United States every year, making it the most common cancer in the United States.
Skin cancers more commonly occur on parts of the body that tend to get more sun like the face, head, neck and arms, but they can develop anywhere on the body – including places like the bottoms of your feet, your genitals and inside your mouth.
Dr. Dendy Engelman, a board certified dermatologic surgeon at Shafer Clinic Fifth Avenue, previously spoke with SurvivorNet about how to best reduce your risk of developing skin cancer. Here are her top five ways to try to avoid the disease:
- Avoid sun during peak hours: 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
- Wear a wide brimmed hat and sunglasses to protect the tops of our heads, the tops of our ears and the delicate area around the eye.
- Wear at least SPF 30 sunscreen and make sure to reapply every two hours or after excessive sweating or swimming.
- Have yearly skin checks (with a professional) because it’s difficult to evaluate areas all over the body.
- Avoid tanning beds. There are no “good” tanning beds, and they can significantly increase your risk of skin cancer.
And though the upcoming summer months may require extra skin protection, it’s important to remember that you are, in fact, at risk of developing skin cancer all year round.
“My patients ask me all the time, ‘Do I really need sunscreen every day, all year round?’ The answer is yes,” Dr. Engelman previously told SurvivorNet. “People think they only need sun protection when they’re in the bright, warm sunshine. But the reality is, we can get sun damage at any time throughout the year, even in the cold, wintry months. Think about when you go skiing. That’s a very high risk. Even though it’s cold, our skin should be protected.”