From NBC/NJ's Adam Aigner-Treworgy and NBC's Mark Murray
Obama hasn't been the only one who's been to the doctor lately... McCain had a regular three-month check-up this morning in Phoenix, and the doctor decided to remove a mole-like growth from the right side of his face near the temple, according to a spokesperson for the campaign. The removal was precautionary and the doctor was not concerned about a recurrence of the skin cancer that has left a scar along his left cheek, the spokesperson said.
The campaign's spokesperson was vague about whether McCain was awaiting further tests -- but repeatedly reassured the press corps that there was nothing to worry about and the procedure was purely a precaution.
*** UPDATE *** McCain just made a statement to the press at an oil rig -- again calling Obama Dr. No on a series of issues, including energy. He also addressed the mole that was removed. Sans band-aid, McCain said his dermatologist took a "small, little nick from my cheek -- like she regularly does."
NBC's Kelly O'Donnell adds he responded "absolutely" and gave a thumbs up when asked if his doctor thinks he is fine.
Advisors say they are waiting on the written statement from Dr. Connolly, McCain's dermatologist expected within the hour.
Before ending his news conference, McCain implored the country to "wear sunscreen" and said melanoma was avoidable.
"If you have any slight discoloration, go to your dermatologist," McCain said, before joking that that was the end of his lecture from the American Dermatologists Association.
*** UPDATE II *** Michael Yardley, chair of Public Affairs at the Mayo Clinic, released this statement: "This morning, as part of his commitment to monitor his dermatological health on a regular basis, Sen. John McCain visited the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Arizona, for a routine examination. As a precaution, a biopsy was ordered of a very small area on Senator McCain's right cheek. This is a routine minor procedure."