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Author Topic: Incredibly Anxious About Melanoma (thanks to a health class chapter)  (Read 651 times)

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Offline makeitcount

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Okay, so. First time poster here. I have intense anxiety, and I tend to fixate on health issues and google the issues to no end.

Last week, my college PE class went through a chapter on cancer, with an emphasis on skin cancer. I left class immediately freaked out, and called my dad in a panic to tell him he needed to go to the doctor for a spot on his arm I had noticed the weekend before. He didn't want to, but called up the dermatologist and oddly they had an opening that day. So, he went in and had a spot on his arm, as well as a spot on his nose biopsied.  Two days later, we got the call that both were benign (thank God!). Should have been the end of my worrying, right? But, alas, I have anxiety.

Today, I realized a mole I have had forever that is on the side of my neck has become intermittently itchy in the last several years. It is lightly pigmented and raised (which has me freaked out thinking it may be amelanotic melanoma). I also have a very dark colored basically flat mole that has also been there for years under my rib cage. However, I have now convinced myself it has changed (the borders are characteristically "feathery", and there is a spot that has appeared in it in the last few months that just SEEMS different). Neither look quite like all the pictures I've googled.

I am calling the dermatologist first thing on Monday (of course, I would have to have this particular attack on Easter weekend!) but it is often difficult to get in quickly and I will likely continue to be anxious until I get a clean biopsy . I have stopped googling for now...but I can't stop thinking about the possibility of having skin cancer. I have had two moles removed and biopsied in the past and both were fine.

I guess I just need a little bit of support. Also, hearing success stories where others went through the same thing and it turned out well seem to help. I hate this!
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Offline mollyfin

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Re: Incredibly Anxious About Melanoma (thanks to a health class chapter)
« Reply #1 on: April 19, 2014, 11:31:48 PM »
I had a mole with blurred edges removed years ago.  No cancer, no nothing, just a weird mole. 

If you've had an unchanging mole for years, you're fine, even if it itches once in a while. 
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Offline makeitcount

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Re: Incredibly Anxious About Melanoma (thanks to a health class chapter)
« Reply #2 on: April 20, 2014, 12:42:11 AM »
Thanks so much for the reply! I just found this site tonight and it is truly amazing what a little support can do for people with anxiety. It's also nice to know there are others like me and I'm not crazy like most of my family would have me believe. Not that they're not supportive, they just eventually get fed up...
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Offline mollyfin

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Re: Incredibly Anxious About Melanoma (thanks to a health class chapter)
« Reply #3 on: April 20, 2014, 03:05:05 PM »
I know those feelings!  God love 'em for putting up with what they do, but at the same time it's nice to be around people who get it. 

It's always good to get moles checked regularly, especially if you suspect changes, but HA plays a lot of tricks on our minds at the same time.  So even if you make an appointment, don't stress about it.  Odds are very good there's nothing wrong with your moles.
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Offline Ira

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Re: Incredibly Anxious About Melanoma (thanks to a health class chapter)
« Reply #4 on: April 20, 2014, 06:31:40 PM »
I had a similar issue about a year ago.  I had a strange growth on the side of my head, itched like crazy, occasionally bled, was red and about the size of a dime and appeared to be spreading.

Dermatologist biopsied it, came back completely normal.  Still have no idea what it is, but when i stopped worrying about it and poking & proding it all hours of the day it healed up.  It still looks pretty gross, so I'm afraid to cut my hair too short, but its benign so I'm grateful.
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Offline gatorfan04

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Re: Incredibly Anxious About Melanoma (thanks to a health class chapter)
« Reply #5 on: April 20, 2014, 10:59:30 PM »
I just had a mole on my neck removed that I have had since I was five years old.  But it had gotten itchy, rough, and bigger.  Google said those were melanoma symptoms.  But guess what?  It was benign.  And the dermatologist knew it was benign before she ever even biopsied it. 
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Offline makeitcount

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Re: Incredibly Anxious About Melanoma (thanks to a health class chapter)
« Reply #6 on: April 22, 2014, 04:29:20 PM »
Thank you both! That helps so much! I have an appointment with my deem next week...if he thinks it's okay I may not insist on a biopsy. Haha.
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