June 2, 2003 at 8:58 PM CDT - Updated June 21 at 6:13 PM
Skin Cancer Warning By: Wendy Ray
(Cape Girardeau, MO)--As the weather gets warmer we tend to think more about our skin, because more of it's out in the open.
But for one Heartland woman, keeping a close eye on her skin may have saved her life. After insisting doctors check it out, Debbie Sisco was diagnosed with melanoma, a potentially deadly form of skin cancer. "I didn't realize being 27 how serious melanoma was," Debbie says. Ten years ago, a mole on Debbie's lower rib cage looked suspicious. "It started beginning to have a half moon around the mole and started itching," she says. Debbie knew immediately, it needed to be removed. "My doctor said it was okay, I said no it's not. So I insisted it was removed, and two days later he called me and said I have first stage melanoma." A simple, outpatient surgery followed. "They had removed all borders, frozen the section, everything was clear," she says. Debbie was lucky. Her cancer was caught early. She's 37 now and has moved on with her life, but she still has to keep a close eye on her moles. "I have had several removed, some had cancer cells in them," Debbie says.
Now Debbie's focused on telling her story, to raise awareness about skin cancer and melanoma. She's never abused the sun and says if she had skin cancer, it can happen to anyone. "At age 27 I didn't realize how serious it was until afterwards. I found out basically I wouldn't be sitting here today."