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Old 09-07-2011, 01:26 PM   #2
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: California
Posts: 428
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Re: Large mole sent for biopsy...

I have had melanoma, and I know it can be very frightening to consider. The melanoma I had was about 1/4" in diameter - about the size of a pencil eraser - and looked "odd." But not really all that much like melanoma.

However, several years ago, I had 3 moles on my torso that were quite large and truly fit all the descriptions of melanoma. They were large, very dark and uneven in color, ragged borders, lumpy/bumpy in texture, asymmetrical. I mean, when you see pictures of melanoma on the internet, these moles were exactly that! Coupled with the fact that I'm very fair-skinned, have red-hair, spent a LOT of time in the sun, suffered a few bad burns during my lifetimes, and have quite a few moles, this put me at risk for melanoma. I watched this moles for quite a number of years, and could never tell if they were growing, if they started to itch, and one time I actually thought one was bleeding. (Though I think I was picking at it so much, it started to bleed.) Finally, I made an appointment with a doctor and told him I wanted them removed. He told he didn't want to do it, as they had been there so long. I insisted, as I was done trying to monitor them and freaking out about them. He removed them and biopsied them. The result? Negative. They were simply moles. Very ugly moles. Very melanoma-looking moles. But moles, all the same.

More than 10 years later, when a freckle developed on my knee, I thought it was a little strange but didn't pay it much mind. Until it developed very quickly into a mole - a rather "odd" mole: very, very round, with an extremely sharp, crisp border, rather dark in color, about 1/4" in diameter. After about a month, it sort of "popped up," and that kind of concerned me, so I had my doctor look at it. She didn't think it was anything, but decided to remove it. The biopsy came back: malignant melanoma.

My point? Don't go off of pictures on the internet. They can try to depict melanoma the best they know how, but there are so many variations, it's hard to capture all of them. What I thought I "knew" would be melamona wasn't. And what didn't fit the criteria turned out to be melanom. You have the mole removed - good! - now let the pathologist do their work. The results will be in soon enough. Worry about that IF there is something to worry about!