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View Full Version : A mole becoming cancerous even covered?


deirrow
03-03-2007, 06:14 PM
I hope it's not happening to me!

Early fall of 2006, a mole on my armpit/chest area became reddish, dry, itchy, flaky, tender, and eventually secreted a bit and scabbed over. I was worried to death, but I had no insurance. This was my rationalization:

-The area is always covered in clothing when outdoors
-I'm Asian
-I'm not fair-skinned
-I have diagnosed eczema and lots of dry, itchy patches on the skin
-I deduced that it was irritated by my clothing because of its position
-It lies in an area full of stretch marks and maybe the mole was irritated because of the stretching
-I heard that moles are dry in general
-I'm not a beach person. The last time was shirtless outdoors was in the summer of 2005. (The mole first started bothering me in fall 2006).

Eventually the mole stopped acting really crazy, but it remained dry. A few months forward to now, it's doing basically the same thing again. Being dry, itchy, flaky, swollen, tender, hard, secreting a bit, and scabbing over. In addition to that, there is a new smaller reddish bump right next to it that secretes a bit as well. Those with eczema can visualize what this secretion looks like: When you scratch and damage the skin, the secretion occurs. It's a clear, sticky fluid.

I'm pretty scared now, since if it IS cancer, then I've had it since early last fall!!

I know everyone will tell me to see a dermatoligist ASAP because my life is worth more than the several thousand bucks I'd have to pay... And I agree now. I know I made a HUGE mistake. Also, I know it may be tough to sympathize with me, but being in poverty as a kid and having my family struggle with money presently, it's tough thinking about dealing with the fact that I might have to pay a thousand or two (where's the money going to come from???) for biopsies for no reason. But after reading a few horrific stories and situations... I've finally decided to see one, insurance or no insurance.

I would really like some guidance and support. I'm pretty worried and foggy-brained right now.

>So I just call up a dermatologist, tell them I would like an appointment, come in, and have it removed?

>How much is it going to cost?

>Is a biopsy even going to be needed? Can it be diagnosed just by inspection? It might save me a few thousand dollars?

>Questions and concerns I should bring up??

Thanks for listening!!! I really had to get this off my mind...

-T

Ladypepper
03-03-2007, 09:07 PM
I can totally understand not having insurance and not being able to see a doctor when needed. It is a harsh reality and I sympathize with you. In fact I was also without insurance and was only diagnosed with melanoma because I was able to get state insurance. If I did not get it when I did, who knows what may have happened. :eek:

As for the mole, I would suggest that you do get it checked as soon as you can. One of the rationalization of it being covered with clothes I can personally dispell that myth for you. My melanoma was on the bottom of my foot and I can guarantee you, the bottom of my foot did not see any sun! lol :D

I do not have any idea what it will cost for the biopsy - maybe someone else will have an idea. But explain to the derm that you are limited due to no insurance and he may be able to ease your mind by looking at it. They are pretty good about being able to tell. Of course, the ONLY way to really tell for sure if it is melanoma is to biopsy. So, you will have to decide that on your own.

I hope everything works out okay and you are able to be seen soon.

deirrow
03-03-2007, 10:51 PM
thanks for your response, ladypepper. which part of ca are you from?

omg, bottom of your foot?! how's the situation now??

i'm glad you can relate to the no insurance thing. when one grows up in poverty, there's a certain mindset created that just makes it so difficult to do do something like this. it's a psychological/sociological thing. but then i remembered that i paid over 10k for 2 years of college... and even failed a few classes. if i can spend money on that, i can spend money on this.

gardenandcats
03-04-2007, 11:03 AM
Most cancers are not melanoma.... But its very inportant that you have this looked at ASAP. Its not that costly to have a biopsy..

deirrow
03-04-2007, 02:00 PM
Thanks gardenandcats,

I believe I read in one case it cost someone $1,000. Perhaps that was in the high end?

Do you have any idea how much should I expect to pay for one?

Either way, I'm calling tomorrow morning.

Isis498
03-05-2007, 09:12 AM
A question for you. Do you know for sure it's a mole? If it is a mole and it's in your clothing area rubbing area, that's mostly likely why it's irritated.

But also there are so many kind of skin conditions, it's mind boggling. Could it possibly be something else like seborrheic Keratosis? IF it is, you could just go in and have it removed with laser or freezing for under $100. At least in my neck of the woods. That's because it would not have to have a cutting and biopsy involved.

And yes, many times they can just look and tell you what these spots are. I have several of the Seborrheic Keratosis and she knew right away and said they were very common and she could laser them off if I wanted.

Just call an office up and make an appointment. See what the Dr. has to say. If it's something that needs actual biopsy, then explain your situation, they may be able to set up a payment plan, many places will do that.

Ladypepper
03-05-2007, 09:50 PM
thanks for your response, ladypepper. which part of ca are you from?

omg, bottom of your foot?! how's the situation now??

i'm glad you can relate to the no insurance thing. when one grows up in poverty, there's a certain mindset created that just makes it so difficult to do do something like this. it's a psychological/sociological thing. but then i remembered that i paid over 10k for 2 years of college... and even failed a few classes. if i can spend money on that, i can spend money on this.

Yep, on the bottom of my foot. Right now, I am just waiting on the Interferon treatments. My melanoma is considered "high risk" because it was deep and invasive. But thankfully I am still stage IIB... so it could always be worse.

You are right, we spend money on a lot of things but the problem is that medical treatment is so over priced and outrageous, it makes it nearly impossible to be able to afford it. It is scary if you think about it.

I hope you have found a derm to help you out. I am in So Cal. Have you checked into any of the programs the gov't has for medical coverage?

deirrow
03-07-2007, 02:16 PM
Thanks for your responses Isis and Ladypepper,

Well I saw the dermatologist today. He seemed experienced but in a rush. I had so many questions and worries, but they barely and feebly escaped from my mouth; We exchanged but a few words before I suddenly found myself shirtless with a needle halfway injected into my skin.

I couldn't bother to look--but I should've, since I really have no idea what he did! I know that he injected the area with a needle and then took some sort of instrument in his hand, I looked away, and when I looked down again he was blowtorching (This was my expression during the blowtorching :eek: ) my wound? Overall the process was a whirlwind for me.

As he was readying to exit, leaving me in the dust, our correspondence went similarly to this:

"I'll do a biopsy next week, so call then, but I think it will be benign."

"Is that a good thing?"

"Yes."

"How can you tell?"

"The way it looked."

His assistant put a small band-aid on me (in my state of mind, I forgot to mention that I was allergic to band-aids) and told me to leave it on for 4 days.

That was that.

You know, I might not be dissatisfied with how it went. Perhaps with the constant, strenuous worrying I've been doing, brevity is a blessing. But the thought can't escape me...

How can he think it's benign?? All he did was inspect it for maybe a minute total before removing it. I felt he didn't know the full scope of things! Either way, it shouldn't matter because the biopsy will reveal all, right?

Thank you all for listening.

Ladypepper
03-07-2007, 08:17 PM
Well good that you got it done. Derms are usually pretty good at knowing what is and isn't something to worry about. But they are human and do make mistakes so what matters is the biopsy. I hope it turns out fine.

I have NO idea what you are talking about with a "blowtorch" though... I hope it was a "punch" biopsy that he did.

Keep us posted on how everything goes. :)

tamojones
03-14-2007, 09:47 PM
Hi all,

I recently had to research insurance plans and I found out there's some good plans out there. If I added my son to my plan, it would have been over $300 a month. I found him a plan through Blue Cross that covers everything for $86 per month, they have some other plans that have more coverage, but for the most part, great plans at an affordable price. Check it out, and best of luck to you.