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Beware! Velvety ‘triple palms’ can be sign of lung cancer

Sao Paulo : In a rare medical condition, a 73-year-old Brazilian woman was diagnosed with lung cancer after she showed up at a dermatologist’s clinic with velvety ‘triple palms’. An elderly smoker who acknowledged that she’d gone through a pack of cigarettes every day for 30 years, the woman was suffering from painful lesions on her hands.

According to Science Alert that cited a case published in a paper in The New England Journal of Medicine, she also had cough for about a year, and had lost 5 kg in the last four months alone. “Physical examination revealed sharp demarcation of the folds in the lines of her hands in addition to a velvety appearance of palmar surfaces and ridging of the skin,” her doctors wrote in the case report.

Velvety palms constitute a rare medical condition known as ‘tripe palms’, due to their resemblance to the rippled appearance of the stomach lining of cows, pigs or sheep. Sometimes called acanthosis palmaris, such tripe palms fall under skin disorder. In the case of this 73-year-old patient, a CT scan revealed irregularities in her lungs.

A subsequent biopsy confirmed the diagnosis of adenocarcinoma, and she underwent chemotherapy and radiation therapy, said the report. “All patients with tripe palms should be evaluated with a full diagnostic work-up for an associated malignancy, particularly lung or gastric carcinoma,” wrote the researchers. (IANS)