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View Full Version : melanoma recurrence..do i need a second opionion


shellyb271981
02-24-2009, 01:35 PM
hi, i was diganosed with melanoma in 2003, it started as a mole in my left calf and had also travelled to the groin, i had interferon. everything was fine till last april when i found a lump behind my knee, before i was scheduled for surgery the lump had trebled in size within days, and it was removed straight away, i was given my results and was told everything was ok. Just before xmas i was feeling unwell and i noticed another lump a few inches from where the last one was behind my knee, i rang my dermatologist and luckily for me he saw me the next day where i was told after searching and searching for my previous op results that there was signs of mestatic melanoma.I had a PET scan a few days later, where it showed there was melanoma in my leg but no signs anywhere else, i had the lump surgically removed on the 10th Jan. since then i'm been told that there is no treatment there for me and that i have to just sit and wait, there is talks of radiation but because my leg is swelling alot they are not recommending it. I now have to wait till April for a CT scan to see if it is still in my leg.
I am looking at it as i have melanoma since last april at least and all i have had is surgery and absolutely nothing to prevent it from returning and i know from plenty of research and other peoples stories that melanoma can travel very quickly and I'm been told to just sit and wait, what is it i'm suppose to wait for.
I am in ireland so i believe that i honestly think the the docs don't know what to do.
So do i sit and wait or look to speak to someone else, and if so how do i go about it?

Chele60
02-25-2009, 07:56 AM
Your situation sounds serious to me, but my knowledge is lacking when it comes to stage III/IV melanoma. And, also, I'm in the U.S. and really don't know much when it comes to the healthcare system in Ireland.

shellyb271981
02-25-2009, 11:46 AM
thanks:) there seems to be very little knowledge of melanoma here, yet skin cancer is rapidly increasing here with the last five years. i think my only hope is to just keep a watch out for any unusal changes in my skin, i have been feeling unwell with the last week, but not sure if this is just down to stress or the melanoma, and i know the docs will say stress until a scan says otherwise.
think i just feel disheartened by my lack of options when clearly there are so many trials ongoing in other countries

Rockford2
02-25-2009, 04:53 PM
I feel like there is not much knowledge about melanoma, here, in the US as well.

Oleander53
03-02-2009, 06:42 PM
I know that you can go for a 2nd opinion and you can go to MD Anderson's and Sloan Kettering Medical Center's site and see about getting your path report re read. I have heard they have a program for people out of town where they read your path slides for you.

I want to share this story and do not anyone to see it as a downer thing. I have shared before that my Father had a total of 6 melanoma's all caught early. First one in his 50's and last one at 93 years old. Well we were told last year this newest melanoma on his earlobe has metastisized to his liver. Everyone felt it had advanced too much for interferon and the Doctors did not want to put him through it because of his age. We were extremely happy with my Father's medical Care and the VA where he went had a Melanoma clinic. We had no reason to question them. He passed away in hospice last year very quickly and quietly....He had a wonderful life and was a very healthy active person. We just assumed it was the melanoma that took him.
We requested an autopsy..much to our suprise he did not pass away from Metast Melanoma.......Liver cancer from Squamous Cell spread to his liver and lungs very rapidly.......yes he had a new Squamous Cell on his face no one was worried about because of the melanoma...... he had Bowen's and that came back on his Autopsy (this is what I have now). They stated his death was NOT from Melanoma as suspected. The question is could this have been caught and prevented? He may have been in his 90's but he was incredibly active and healthy...... did this get overlooked? He was so diligent about his skin checkups and he lived a long life.

I guess what I am trying to say is have a 2nd opinion if you can afford it. Especially if you have any questions in your gut about your care.

I recently had my Bowen's Squamous Cell Carinoma Path slides relooked at to make sure they had not made an error. There is a 4% error on Pathology slides. I wanted to makes sure they had NOT overlooked a melanoma.


Good luck and let us know how you do........Oleander

shellyb271981
03-03-2009, 11:54 AM
thank you for sharing that..and very sorry to here about your father. It just goes to show that things can be overlooked, and it does not matter what age the patient is.
i have my ct scan the 1st of april, so i'm going to see what the results of that is and make a decision.

Wladi
05-01-2009, 05:58 AM
Hi,

I am new to the site and have read your messages re. melanoma. My husband has just been diagnosed with... yet again melanoma. It started off with a large tumor being removed from his leg in 2006 (GP failed him) and the lymphnodes in the groin. He then has had a further mole on the same leg and one on his chest removed, both melanoma. It has now been 3 years from the first one and it has come back as a secondary in his gut. The docs will call us in in a week or two (waiting game is killing me) to tell us if they can operate, how they will operate etc. We have been aware from the start that this bloody illness is a life long risk and you have to take every day as it comes and enjoy it, particularly as we are having our first baby soon.

The docs in this hospital have been absolutely AMAZING, we have done every check, scan, mole check, taken my own photo's of my husband and he is in the best hands. What more can we do. He has stopped smoking, has always had a healthy diet and a postive attitude, its just bad bad bad luck. Having said that there ARE people who live a long and full life, just keep getting it cut away and treated. There ARE people where the melanoma stops recurring. My husband had level 3 in 2006 and he is still here.

My advise to the Irish gentleman is to stay positive, but definitely get a second opinion immediately. Why should you have to wait weeks for scans/appointments? Although you may be all clear, its the waiting which is so stressful and it sounds like that is the last thing you need right now and is making you feel ill.

Good Luck!