Trip to dermatologist not about vanity

Published: Wednesday, February 19, 2014 at 04:02 PM.

Every year, I head to Morehead City for a visit with my dermatologist. Like a sailing ship, I need to be careened to remove pesky barnacles.

He beaches me on his table for proper inspection. Generally, everything is pretty ship-shape with an issue showing up now and then.

On this last visit, he parted the maze of hair rigging and found something of concern on top of my left ear. I used the term “rigging” because my ears are perpetually hidden under my shabby tangle of hair.

He mumbled a few “hmmms” and said he needed a sample. He also said words I hate to hear from any doctor - “this may sting a little” - as he proceeded to numb the appendage.

He cut a sample to send away for biopsy and said he’d let me know. After not hearing back for a week, I began to suspect nothing came of it.

Chuck Berry sang to me from my phone, “Ring, ring goes the bell!” My doctor’s office was calling to tell me I needed a procedure that was too involved to do in his office so I was being referred to Down East Medical Associates.

I’d be lying if I said I felt good about being sent to another dry-dock but understood he was looking out for my best interests. I did wonder what was so involved he couldn’t do it.

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