In a Saint Joseph Health Scene report...
A new report out reveals a cream used to treat people for skin cancer may have side effects...good ones!
The study shows not only does it kill cancer cells but also takes years off a patient's appearance.
Mary Casimir always loved the sun, but by the time she reached 40 she realized the sun didn't love her --especially her face.
"There were kind of rough, roughish pinkish, not normal looking small patches on my skin," says Casimir.
Her dermatologist, Dr. David Orentreich, prescribed fluorouracil--a common treatment for skin cancer.
He was treated with the cream himself 20 years ago.
It killed his cancer cells and he says had a positive side effect...it made him look younger.
"When it heals it looks much better than if you surgically scraped off the spot," says Dr. Orentreich.
A study funded by the company that produces Fluorouracil says it looked at 21 patients using the cream for two weeks. It killed the cancer and after six months their skin looked and felt better...and there were fewer wrinkles.
Dermatologists say the improvements will last in patients as long they protect the newly improved surface of their skin from the sun.
The test subjects showed increased levels of chemicals that produce collagen, just what skin is thirsting for as it ages.
"It is quite similar to a peel. You can restore some of the damaged and lost collagen in the skin," says Dr. Dana Sachs, one of the study authors from the University of Michigan.
Other common age reducing treatments like lasers and botox can cost thousands of dollars.
Fluorouracil, applied at home, is easier and cheaper.