Paule Laflamme’s Story: Living with Gorlin syndrome

Meet Paule Laflamme. She’s 50 years old and has Gorlin syndrome, also called basal cell carcinoma nevus syndrome (BCCNS) or basal cell nevus syndrome. This greatly increases her risk for developing basal cell carcinoma.

Interviewed by CSPA Board member Preet Bhogal

Please tell us about yourself. My name is Paule Laflamme. I was born and raised in Thetford-Mines, Quebec, and have been living in Toronto and its suburbs for the past 31 years. I’m currently an administrative assistant for a union office in Toronto. I am married and have two boys: Anthony, 21, and Ainsley, 14. Anthony also has Gorlin syndrome— he was also born with cleft lip and palate and he also has skin cancer.

Tell us something about your condition. I was diagnosed 26 years ago with basal cell carcinoma, a form of skin cancer, which by now has been removed from all over my body. I’ve lost my nose to skin cancer and had to have it completely reconstructed.

About 16 years ago I learned about Gorlin syndrome (GS). People with GS have pits in the palms of their hands and at the bottoms of their feet and are at higher risk for basal cell carcinoma. Fortunately, I found out about a support group called BCCNS Life Support Network and got involved in a clinical study for a new drug. And it’s working wonders! The skin cancer has [...] continue the story