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    Old 01-11-2004, 07:22 PM   #1
    hilery79
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    suspicious mole

    Hi,
    I'm 24 and have had a mole on my back for over 10 years. It is raised, firm, pinkish-red in color, and about the size of a pencil eraser. It has always looked this way except I think it is a little less raised than it used to be. It also is a little faded in the center.
    Anyway, I showed it to a friend of mine who is a nurse for a derm and she said it looked like a spot she had seen on a patient who ended up having amelanomic(sp?) melanoma. Now, I am scared to death. My regular dr. did look at it several years ago and wasn't concerned at all. I'm going to call a dermatologist tomorrow, but there is only one in town and the wait might be long.
    While I'm waiting to see the Dr., I had a couple ?'s I thought someone on here might be able to help me with. Since this mole has been there for atleast 10 years, wouldn't it have grown or spread if it were malignant? Also, I've always heard melanomas were darker in color-Is this always true?

    I would really appreciate any replys. I just went through treatment for thyroid cancer a few months ago, so I am very nervous about this.
    Thanks!

    Last edited by hilery79; 01-11-2004 at 08:52 PM.

     
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    Old 01-12-2004, 05:37 AM   #2
    Saraly
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    Re: suspicious mole

    Melanoma is usually a dark, black, bluish color. Your mole doesn't sound like MM to me but I'm not a dermatologist. Moles can be present on your body for your whole life without changing to cancer and this is the case for most of them but they can under go malignant changes. It's good you're going for a screening, it will put your mind at ease.

     
    Old 01-12-2004, 06:22 PM   #3
    hilery79
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    Re: suspicious mole

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Saraly
    Melanoma is usually a dark, black, bluish color. Your mole doesn't sound like MM to me but I'm not a dermatologist. Moles can be present on your body for your whole life without changing to cancer and this is the case for most of them but they can under go malignant changes. It's good you're going for a screening, it will put your mind at ease.
    Saraly,
    Hi, thank you very much for the reply. I have always thought that melanomas were always dark in color, too, but my friend knew of someone who had a rare form of melanoma that lacks melanin and is usually pink or skin colored.
    Thankfully, I was able to get into the dermatologist next Monday. Hopefully, he will be willing to do a biopsy even though my mole looks fairly innocent.

    Thanks again,
    hilery

     
    Old 02-14-2004, 09:33 PM   #4
    apple
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    Re: suspicious mole

    Hilery: Regardless of how it is diagnosed, I would opt to have a doctor remove it and the surrounding tissue. I had a similar one myself and did not hesitate to get it removed. Now I have peace of mind and nicer looking skin. Moles and lesions can be areas of developing cancers. Why risk it? Get it removed. Mine was bigger than what you described, and I have nary a scar from its removal.

    Last edited by apple; 02-14-2004 at 09:36 PM.

     
    Old 02-24-2004, 04:42 PM   #5
    pooh5474
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    Re: suspicious mole

    I just had this experience with my 6 year old son. His was pinkish red in color and the exact size and shape of a pencil eraser. Had it removed by a dermatologist and they just called me yesterday to say it's a spitz nevus. Never even heard of it until now. It's some kind of benign melanoma. They reassured me that it showed no cancer but he has to go back in 8 weeks to have more tissue removed because they want to make sure they get all the cells so that it doesn't regrow. Apparently, they feel the removal wasn't enough and are airing on the side of caution. Needless to say...as a mother I'm a nervous wreck, but thankful I made the choice to have it removed.

     
    Old 02-25-2004, 09:48 PM   #6
    hilery79
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    Re: suspicious mole

    Hi,
    Thanks for the replys. I went to a derm last month and had it looked at. He didn't remove this mole, but he did remove 2 others that looked similar. He said they were dermatofibromas(benign). He was pretty sure the one on my back was the same thing, but he wants to watch it so I'm going back in April.
    hilery

     
    Old 03-01-2004, 05:34 PM   #7
    lufour
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    Re: suspicious mole

    I had a mole as far back as I can remember but it started changing when I was 27 or 28. It was light to med. brown, raised, round, about the size of one of these smiley faces and it was not bothersome at all in all of that time. It was on my back on my left shoulder. It started growing what looked like a shadow and eventually the shadow moved enough to the right that it looked like 2 moles next to each other, touching -- one raised & the new one was flat. Then the flat one started raising up kind of attaching itself to the original one. By this time (2 years later) I made an appt. with a Derm for 3 weeks later. During this time it's like the mole knew. It started growing unbelievably fast. It took over the original mole & then bled!!

    As it turned out I had Clark Level IV and the Drs. were pretty astounded that it had not spread. I had 3 surgeries in 6 weeks. They took tissue to study in lab to find out what was unique about my skin cells that caused my cancer not to spread like it normally would have at that point. I did not have insurance at the time but Baylor hospital paid for my medical because they were using the info to further their own research studies so it benefitted them to have me as a patient. There were 41 Drs involved in my case.

    My mole did not look like anything that I have ever seen in the brochures or any other study I have done. It was quite normal. I have always had moles & hated them but what I learned is that the great thing about having moles is that they are good indicators to alert you that you have cancer. Twenty percent of melanomas do not involve moles so you cannot rely solely on moles. I now understand why drs throughout my life would not consider removing my moles unless I had one that was really bothersome (like where a bra strap would constantly rub or something irritating like that). It is not that the moles attract the cancer necessarily, people that are more suseptible to melanoma usually have a lot of moles in addition to the fair skin, non-brown eyes, etc. The moles can let you know when there is a problem so appreciate them if you can for being little "warning buttons". Even if you have them removed the fact that they were there was meaningful & you could be removing your indicator.

    I am sure there are different opinions about that but I am just going off what 41 cancer Specialists conveyed to me. Good luck to you. It does not sound like a typical melanoma but still have it checked.

    BTW, even if someone was found to have melanoma & it had spread all over & the future looked bleak there is hope. During the time that I was going thru my ordeal a vaccine was being developed to treat people with melanoma that had spread to their lymph nodes. My friend's husband had to fly to Bethesda, MD every 3 weeks for a year to be treated for his melanoma. He wasn't given a lot of hope but 2 years later his cancer has not gotten worse. He may turn out okay. I feel confident they are saving a lot more lives today than they were a decade ago.

    Diana
    Melanoma Clark Level IV - passed 10-year cancer-free anniversary Dec. 2003!!!! Life is GREAT!!

     
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