Joe Biden had a cancerous skin lesion that cannot metastasize or spread removed last month during his annual physical, the White House confirmed on Friday.
“The president had a skin lesion removed from his chest,” Biden’s physician, Kevin O’Connor, said in a letter released to the press.
The removal of the lesion was announced after Biden’s physical in February.
On Friday, O’Connor said: “As expected, the biopsy confirmed that the small lesion was basal cell carcinoma.
“All cancerous tissue was successfully removed. The area around the biopsy site was treated presumptively with electrodessication and curettage at the time of the biopsy. No further treatment is required.”
O’Connor also said the type of carcinoma taken from the president’s chest was not of any type that can spread to other parts of the body through metastasis.
The site of the biopsy had “healed nicely”, he said, adding that “the president will continue dermatologic surveillance as part of his ongoing comprehensive healthcare”.
At 80, Biden is the oldest president ever to occupy the Oval Office, and his health is monitored closely by media, allies and opponents alike.
He has not yet confirmed a run for re-election in 2024, though many – including the first lady, Jill Biden – expect him to do so.
If successful, he would be 82 at the start of his second term and 86 at its end.
One of two major confirmed candidates for the Republican nomination, Nikki Haley, has generated headlines by calling for cognitive tests for candidates over the age of 75. Biden’s White House predecessor Donald Trump, the leading confirmed Republican candidate, is 76.
A summary released after Biden’s February physical made no mention of cognitive testing.
Biden has faced health challenges previously, including treatment for two cerebral aneurysms in 1988.
After the president’s physical last month, O’Connor said he “remains fit for duty, and fully executes all of his responsibilities without any exemptions or accommodations”.
Biden said: “Everything really went well. Thank God for small favors.”
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