Doctors on Wednesday removed two cancerous growths from US first lady Jill Biden, who was “feeling fine” after her surgery, they said.
“All of the cancerous tissue has been successfully removed (…) We will monitor the area closely as it heals, but we do not anticipate that any further procedures will be required,” presidential physician Kevin O’Connor said in a statement. A “small lesion” on Jill Biden’s left eyelid was “completely removed” and “sent for standard microscopic examination,” he added.
During the procedure, doctors discovered another lesion on the left side of Jill Biden’s torso, which also turned out to be cancerous and was removed.
The First Lady presented “facial swelling and bruising” after the operation but “feels good,” said Kevin O’Connor, specifying that she would return to the White House “in the course of the day”.
Accompanied by her husband Joe Biden on Wednesday, she boarded the Marine One presidential helicopter in the morning to travel to Walter Reed military hospital near Washington.
The White House confirmed he had a “planned outpatient surgical procedure, known as Mohs surgery.” This procedure, which is done under local anesthesia, is considered extremely effective in eradicating the formation of skin cancer if it happens early enough.
The presidential doctor, Kevin O’Connor, announced on January 4 the discovery, “during a routine screening for skin cancer, (of) a small lesion (…) above the eye of the First lady”. “As a precaution, the doctors advised to remove it,” wrote the doctor in a letter made public by the spokesperson for the “First Lady”, Vanessa Valdivia.
Jill Biden, 71, is the oldest First Lady in US history, while her 80-year-old husband is also the oldest resident in the history of the White House. Cancer is a personal cause for Joe Biden, whose son Beau died in 2015 of brain cancer and who has made reducing the death rate from the disease a “presidential priority.”