Have a bruise on your nail but not sure where it came from? You pay little attention to the bruise, as you're sure you bumped your finger at some point and simply forgot about it. Bruise or no bruise, what's the big deal? So when a New York woman named Julie initially noticed a light brown line across her nail, she didn’t do anything about it. But as time went on, the line got darker and wider, until eventually it turned black. Finally finding reason for concern, Julie went to a specialist to get it looked at.
What she found out was much more alarming than she could have imagined. The results indicated that she had malignant melanoma of the nail bed. “There was a brown line across my fingernail for I would say maybe a few years. It started as a light line and then it eventually started getting wider and the middle of it started to get really black,” Julie said. The cancer was caught early enough to avoid any serious health risks, however, Julie still had to undergo surgery to remove the nail.
"People will sometimes develop an early melanoma and think it’s an injury and they don’t even really realize they’re supposed to go to their dermatologist,” New York-based nail specialist Dr. Dana Stern explained. Want to know a few signs to be mindful of? CBS News gives you the scoop:
- Not all nail stripes are cancer, but it’s important to get them checked out because some are.
- Reggae legend Bob Marley died from nail cancer.
- Nail cancer is most commonly found in African-Americans.
- There has been no correlation found between nail cancer and “cosmetic nail treatments.”