Tik Tok user Maria Sylvia went viral when she told how she discovered a rare nail cancer. In a video posted on March 15, she shared a photo of her right thumb with the caption “Had this for ten years thinking it was a nice line on my nail, it was cancer.” The image reached 15.9 million people on the social network and is accompanied by the text “I wanted to be kidding, but I have some great photos”.
Very rare skin cancer
In the days that followed, Maria told how she received the diagnosis and shared some moments of the treatment. She has a rare case of skin cancer called subungual melanoma, which is when the tumor settles under one of her fingernails. Statistically, it accounts for only 0.7% to 3.5% of melanoma cases. That’s what the American commented in the video.
“Many of you are panicking, but there’s probably no reason to panic. This was the first photo I noticed (the nail change), from 2012. You can see that line forming there. Basically, (the stain) ) developed over the course of a year. I was an athlete, so I had physicals every year and saw doctors all the time. No one had noticed until one day a doctor noticed. That was probably in 2014.” .
Stains on fingernails and toenails
Throughout the story, Maria made a point of reassuring the audience. “It’s a very atypical case of the melanoma family. They usually appear on the soles of the feet, on the palms of the hands, but they can appear in other places. When most people have spots like the one I had on the internet, it’s usually related to It’s impact that they cause bruises on the hands. For some, unfortunately, like me, melanoma. It’s very rare,” he said.
Again, all the statistics were in her favor. This type of cancer is more common in black or Asian people, with ages ranging from 50 to 70 years and with greater occurrence in the toenails than in the hands. All different features of the TikToker case. “I would advise you to see a doctor, but this is a very rare cancer, especially for my demographic. Probably nothing, but it’s okay to see a doctor,” she added.
It is much more common for this type of stain to be caused by a bruise after a knock on furniture, for example, or by fungal infections such as those transmitted in swimming pools.
Surgery for subungal melanoma
Despite everything, the young woman considers herself a very lucky person. This Wednesday (30/3) she posted updates about the tumor removal procedure. “In my case, the option was surgery. They took a part of my skin, almost the entire area of my nail”, she said.
As there was no tissue compromised in other areas, she can receive a graft of her own skin in the area of the finger, to cover the hole left by the area that was with cancer, which was removed. “It’s okay, I’m super lucky and so grateful,” she celebrated. The donation was taken from a piece of the forearm and placed on top of the thumb.