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Author Topic: Intro And Anxiety About Melanoma  (Read 537 times)

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Offline PrinceOfWorry

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Intro And Anxiety About Melanoma
« on: February 16, 2014, 03:35:58 AM »
First off, I have suffered from health anxiety since I could walk. I remember bouts of depression and terror from my earliest memories. In recent years, professional and married life has helped me to keep my mind on other things, but every now and then it returns suddenly and with a heavy hand. The last week has been overwhelming.

I recently discovered a change in a mole on my shoulder. It has always been there, a very dark mole, but last week I noticed it somehow. It just seemed different. Or at least it grabbed my attention and hadn't before. It had changed from a simple round spot to a slightly oval shape with some change of color here and there. Like the mole was spreading. It started out as a 2mm mole and at the time I noticed it, was 2.5mm x 4mm. Small by textbook guidelines. I only wish that I had noticed it earlier. So, 6 days later, the mole has been removed. I went in to see the dermatologist and he looked at it for about 10 seconds and said, "Yeah, it looks different. Let's just get rid of that one right now. I will send it off to look for pathology and will get back to you soon." I heard that as, "I will call you next week to let you know if you have melanoma or not."

He used a shave excision to remove it and the procedure was totally painless.

I am waiting now for the biopsy results and I am sweating bullets. I have a massively stressful life and I simply don't have space in my mind for more worry, but I am somehow managing to squeeze a bit more in there.

Anyone have a similar experience? I could strongly use some words of encouragement and wisdom right now.
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Offline Happenstance

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Re: Intro And Anxiety About Melanoma
« Reply #1 on: February 16, 2014, 06:00:19 AM »
Melanoma is a rarer form of skin cancer, the most common forms are VERY easy to treat, I know lots of people who have had a squamous cell skin cancer simply removed. If caught Early, melanoma is still treatable so long as there is no metastasis to other parts of the body. If melanoma is 'in situ' which means it has not spread, surgery usually gets rid of it. Your derm is just being really careful that's all  :sign0111:
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Offline Leo99

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Re: Intro And Anxiety About Melanoma
« Reply #2 on: February 16, 2014, 06:01:46 AM »
Hello and welcome to Anxiety Zone  :action-smiley-065:! Good to have you on board. You will find people with very similar stories here.

Though it never really worried me profoundly, I did have 2 of my moles removed due to changes and couple of them are on the 'doc watch'. All was well in both cases though the changes were unspecific.

My advice would be to not stress about it in advance (I know, that's easy to say and hard to do!) cus we cannot really tell what the future holds. My guess would be that you'll be ok cus most moles and the changes are harmless. Good luck and let us know  :winking0008:!
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From childhood's hour I have not been
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Offline soaringfalcon

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Re: Intro And Anxiety About Melanoma
« Reply #3 on: February 16, 2014, 10:21:09 AM »
Welcome!!!  My earliest memory is of anxiety too.  I guess we were born this way  :laugh3:

If it's been 6 days since the biopsy, I would bet everything is fine.  I had two removed and never got a call.  I was convinced that they were positive and the nurse didn't call me back.  I was terrified to make the call.  I had another appointment a few months later for something else and finally asked him and he did check for me and the pathology was fine.

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Offline PrinceOfWorry

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Re: Intro And Anxiety About Melanoma
« Reply #4 on: February 17, 2014, 12:13:32 AM »
I had the biopsy on Friday. I expect to hear back this week. Then I am leaving the country on a longish vacation/work trip on Friday.

My mole wasn't a bump or ulcerated, but was flat (like a freckle) and vaguely multi-colored and vaguely asymmetrical. Brown with a dark part and some very faint pink, according to the doc.

Pardon the hair, but this is the mole. 2.5mm x 4mm.
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Offline Leo99

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Re: Intro And Anxiety About Melanoma
« Reply #5 on: February 17, 2014, 02:15:18 PM »
PrinceOfWorry, I'm no doctor and that is only a pic but based on that pic alone I have many of those  :winking0008:.
Good luck!
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From childhood's hour I have not been
As others were; I have not seen
As others saw; I could not bring
My passions from a common spring.
(E. A. Poe)

Offline MrMoleHill

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Re: Intro And Anxiety About Melanoma
« Reply #6 on: February 17, 2014, 06:02:17 PM »
I'm no dermatopathologist, but that doesn't look melanomic at all.  I've had a few concerning moles removed, and all were benign; except one, which was severely dysplastic. That one was extremely dark brown, almost black.  One day I noticed it out of the blue, but it was in a spot that I may have overlooked.

Get back to us with the results, when you know them.
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Offline PrinceOfWorry

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Re: Intro And Anxiety About Melanoma
« Reply #7 on: February 20, 2014, 05:29:22 AM »
Still no word from the doctor. I will keep you posted.
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Offline PrinceOfWorry

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Re: Intro And Anxiety About Melanoma
« Reply #8 on: February 26, 2014, 01:46:04 PM »
The dermatologist called two days ago and left a voicemail. I was terrified to listen to it until yesterday afternoon as I prepared to play dominoes out in the front yard here in Santiago with some friends. I decided to go ahead and listen, knowing that it would be best to have done that while in the company of friends than alone in my room at night or just before a long workday.

To my surprise and elation, the mole was determined to be alentiginous junctional nevus. Not cancerous.

Yay.
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Offline IAMHEALTHY

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Re: Intro And Anxiety About Melanoma
« Reply #9 on: February 26, 2014, 03:47:19 PM »
Melanoma is a rarer form of skin cancer, the most common forms are VERY easy to treat, I know lots of people who have had a squamous cell skin cancer simply removed. If caught Early, melanoma is still treatable so long as there is no metastasis to other parts of the body. If melanoma is 'in situ' which means it has not spread, surgery usually gets rid of it. Your derm is just being really careful that's all  :sign0111:

Yea, Melanoma is a legit fear. I thought it was a simple excision, but even in early stages it a toss up

Best wishes op
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