Christie patient undergoes cancer op aged 102

Press release posted 5 December 2016

Great-grandmother Adelaide Kershaw has undergone life-saving surgery at Manchester’s specialist cancer hospital The Christie - at the age of 102.

And just 24 hours after the procedure to remove a large malignant growth from her forehead, the former dinner lady from Littleborough near Rochdale said she was feeling well, adding: “I just want to get walking again.”

Adelaide, who has lived through two world wars and began her working life in a laundry, has two daughters, four grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

She was diagnosed with a rare form of skin cancer and had a lump the size of a tangerine removed from her forehead, followed by a skin graft.

Consultant in plastic and reconstructive surgery at The Christie, Damir Kosutic, said: “Adelaide required extensive surgery. She had a rare type of skin cancer affecting almost the entire left half of her forehead. The tumour was causing her great difficulties. Here at The Christie we have a multi-disciplinary team approach and the decision was made for me to proceed with surgery, despite the very high risk”.

Mr Kosutic, who specialises in complex cancer reconstruction, had to remove half the skin from Adelaide’s forehead and replace it with the skin from her thigh.

“Usually, procedures of this extent are performed under general anaesthetic but this could have proved dangerous for a patient of this age so I teamed up with consultant anaesthetist, Dr Jaya Nariani, to come up with the best way to manage this and I operated under local anaesthetic and slight sedation.

“The tumour was successfully removed in under an hour and the patient is recovering well without much difficulty.

She came through the surgery really well and was very brave. Not every patient would be able to have that sort of extensive surgery while awake.

Adelaide is now recuperating at home. She lives with her daughter Christine Garvey, who said her mother had coped well with the operation, adding: “She is keen to get back to her crocheting.”

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