27 Apr Dolores
One thing I tell anyone and everyone who will listen is this – melanoma is a deadly cancer of the skin.
You can get melanoma ANYWHERE you have skin.
I was diagnosed (stage 3) three & a half years ago with melanoma in my vulva! Trust me when I tell you – my vulva was never exposed to the sun! I was never a sun worshipper, and I never went to a tanning salon in my life. What I had, ever since I could remember as a child was a small (1 & 1/2″) area of discoloration on my vulva. Never thought anything other than it was a ‘beauty or birthmark’.
In July 2008, when I saw a tiny speck of blood on the toilet paper – I thought I had been too rigorous and should trim my nails. Three months later, after happened a few more times my daughter said ‘mom just go get it checked out’. At first I was a little reluctant because there was no pain at all, and just a teeny-weenie speck of blood on some toilet paper. A week later I was have a wide local incision and my sentinel node removed. Thus far I have had 8 surgeries. My last was a week ago – part of my left lung was removed. Two weeks ago my PET scan showed something ‘new’ and my doctors didn’t want to take any chances. I am thankful the lung biopsy came back clean, but there is melanoma in my groin lymph nodes again. I am lined up for a new clinical trial at Yale to begin next week.
So, as you pass along the melanoma message please please tell anyone who will listen, anywhere you have skin, you can have melanoma!
Good Luck, God Bless & be strong!