In August or September 1944, Dr. Elliot Cutler noticed that Eisenhower, then Supreme Commander of Allied Forces in Europe, had a superficial blackish nodule on his trunk, about 1 cm in diameter. Cutler, who was chief surgeon at one of the Harvard hospitals before the war, feared it was a melanoma. He excised it ("a liberal speciment of skin and fat"), put it in a bottle, and showed it to Pillsbury, who looked at it in some disbelief and immediately remarked: "But Elliott, this is an absolutely typical seborrheic keratosis, and I'll wager you 100 to 1 on it." Pillsbury describes Cutler's reaction as "slightly crestfallen, but undaunted."
Histologic examination of the specimen confirmed Pillsbury's diagnosis.
Some years later, when Eisenhower was president, he addressed a meeting of the Society of [civilian] Consultants to the Armed Forces. In his remarks he said he owed a debt to some consultants because they had probably saved his life by getting rid of a malignant growth on his skin. 1
|Comment: Also in: Nero, F. Conversations with the President. Buffalo, NY: Westwood Pharmaceuticals, 1978, volume 1, pp. 13-14.|