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melanoma

Hi,
I'm a 50 years old female, have had extensive sun damage over the years and see a dermatologist regularly.  Over the past 10 years I've had 9 biopsies, all but 4 mildly atypical.  One of those three was moderately atypical (1999), one severely (2001), one melanoma-in-situ (2 weeks ago), and one mildly atypical but possible early lentigo maligna (1999). (each of these 4 was excised).  My father died of pancreatic cancer and I and each of my sisters have lots of moles.
My question has to do with my face.  I have several patches that look like keratosis on my cheeks - reddish areas surrounded by tannish colors.  I really like and trust my dermatologist, but am worried that her recommendation to have these burned off is the wrong one.  Should these be biopsied because of my history, or am i being overly concerned?
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Avatar_dr_m_tn
Hi. Given your past history, I don't see any harm in having a skin biopsy of those cheek patches done, before any kind of treatment is started.  My concern is whether a biopsy would be disfiguring to your face.  If it's not going to leave a permanent scar, then you may opt to have it done.
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