First lady Jill Biden will be going under the knife next week after a “small lesion” was found under her right eye during a routine skin cancer screening, the top doctor at the White House said Wednesday.
“In an abundance of caution, doctors have recommended that [the lesion] be removed,” Physician to the President Dr. Kevin O’Connor explained in a memo to the first lady’s press secretary.
“On Wednesday, January 11th at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, the First Lady will undergo a common outpatient procedure known as Mohs surgery to remove and definitively examine the tissue,” O’Connor added, promising to keep the Office of the First Lady apprised of any changes to the 71-year-old’s condition or treatment plan.
According to the Mayo Clinic, Mohs surgery involves cutting away thin layers of skin in order to look for any signs of cancer. The area being treated during Mohs surgery is numbed and most patients can go home after the procedure and don’t require a hospital stay.
“The goal of Mohs surgery is to remove all of the skin cancer without hurting the healthy skin around it. Mohs surgery allows the surgeon to be sure that all the cancer is gone. This makes it more likely that the cancer is cured. It reduces the need for other treatments or more surgery,” the Mayo Clinic states.
One of Biden’s top issues as first lady has been supporting efforts at finding a cure for cancer.
In November 2022, during the MLB World Series between the Philadelphia Phillies and the Houston Astros, Biden participated in a Stand Up to Cancer tribute at Philadelphia’s Citizens Bank Park
Biden paid tribute to her stepson Beau, who died of a brain tumor in 2015.