Sore and scar on 90-year-olds cheek.

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Hi.

My grandpa is 90, 2-3 years ago, a sore appeared on his cheek, and it kinda of dug a hole in his cheek. It had puss in it, kind of, a thin yellow substance. So, we assume that it got infected. We applied various ointments, and nothing quite worked. However, over time, it scabbed, and a scar started to form. I should mention that the thing was stinging him. And as the scar formed, it was Okay, for a while, then the scar tissue dislodged somehow, and it was again a sore, a hole, with puss.

We then applied Gentamicin, and the site started to close again. Scar tissue formed. For like almost a year, he felt Okay. It did not hurt, and it seemed like the scar would fully form, and this would be the end of it. But, a few weeks back, he started to mention that he feeling sensations again from his cheek. The scar started to slightly change shape, and one section of it turned a bit dark. It looks like the dark part is underneath the scar tissue. He is saying that he's feeling pain in this part of his cheek again.

Does anyone know what this is? It is not spreading or anything. At first, it looked like a sore that would not heal. He's had it for 2-3 years now.

I should mention that going to the doctor is not an option, because my grandpa is 90, and he's very grumpy, and there is no convincing him to visit a doctor's office at his age.

Any advise would be helpful.

I have attached two images of his problem. imageimage

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  • Edited

    Any sore that does not heal should be refereed to a doctor or dermatologist immediately. This may be a skin cancer which needs to be removed. Its quite a simple procedure done under local anaesthetic.

    It then can be biopsied and if further treatment is needed he will have to decide what to do. Often, just the removal will be all that is needed.

    It is possible that this is also a recurrent deep infected cyst as it seems to be in his beard. Ideally a dermatologist or doctor can again, sort this out very quickly. Applying ointments wont do much good in either case.

    Do try to get your grandpa to a doctor, although people of this age are often anti doctors and intervention of any type, it would be in his best interests and would help you to understand what is going on.

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    • Edited

      Oh dear. I know how frustrating and worrying this attitude can be . Sometimes you almost have to be brutal and say you have no sympathy and dont want to hear about the problem as you can do nothing, which is true. Tell him the decision is his, but he is not to complain about the problem any more. You are then putting the ball back in his court to do something. At the moment he is almost hoping that you will find the answer, which you have tried to do on here.....you can do no more.

      For some elderly they have the notion that doctors mean hospital and hospital means dying. At his age this is probably enforced by previous experience from a very long time ago, and he is assuming things are the same. Modern medicine is so very different from his young days and he would feel better almost immediately.

      Can you talk to the doctor yourself? Do you know anyone who could convince him to see a doctor?

      Good luck with all your efforts.

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    • Posted

      Thank you for your reply. It is very hard. He won't even leave the house at this point, because he lost my grandpa a year and a half ago, after 70 years of marriage, and he's depressed, has other health issues, and keeps saying that he does not want to prolong his life. Yet, he keeps complaining about his health issues and looking for sympathy, but gets aggressive when we bring up doctors. It is a cycle.

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    • Posted

      I should mention that we did consult a general doctor who saw him 2 years ago, and that person also said that he should got to a plastic surgeon and get the thing cut out.

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    • Posted

      So I agree with that doctor. Unfortunately you cannot force anyone to do anything regarding their health. He sounds very depressed, but Im guessing he wouldnt see a doctor about this either. Im sure he doesnt see it as depression.

      Can you contact his doctor to explain the situation? the doctor may be able to give you some help over the phone or via Email. Or may even see you to talk it over. I think you need support as well, as you are having to cope with all this.

      Not sure where you are in the world but if you are in UK his doctor or associates would be able to give you some advice. Are you his next of kin?

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    • Posted

      I'm his grandson. We're not in the UK. There really is almost nothing one can do here. He is susceptible to me giving him creams and the like, but he will not leave the house. Before COVID hit in 2020, he was active, going out to buy groceries. But after my grandma died, he's essentially waiting out his time. I'll keep doing my best. Thanks.

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    • Posted

      This sort of thing can be absolutely heart rending as you obviously love your Grandpa and have his best interests at heart. Does he have any sons or daughters that can help you, and help him to see that he needs treatment?

      Yes keep trying. I feel for you.

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