New and worried
October 18, 2017 at 1:39 pm #14653AnonymousInactive
I recently had some change on my skin and did some research, I’m glad I found this website, there are lots of nice people here.
I’m 46 with two young kids (10 year old girl and 4 year old boy). I live in a small town in south west Ontario. I have a mole on my lower breast for years (don’t know when but I saw it in the mirror a few years ago), it was less than 5mm until early this year, it started grow and it’s not as smooth as it was before, feels like it’s scratching when my arm accidently touch it. I didn’t think it’s a big deal and lived with it for a few months. About a month ago it started itching and it’s about 1cm diameter, so I went to my family doctor, he asked me if I want it off, and I said yes, so he referred me to a local general surgeon to get it off. My first appointment with the surgeon will be in December (two months waiting time for my first appointment with my surgeon), and while I was waiting to see my surgeon, the mole becomes irritated, when I talked with my mom last weekend, I realized my grandpa got melanoma and died due to it got into his lung and some other organs. That was back to 2003. So I started my research on melanoma, mine looks like a nodular melanoma if it’s unfortunately a cancerous one. I raised my concern to my family doctor but he insist (99.999% sure according to his experience) it’s a Seborrheic Keratosis (SK). He won’t refer me to any cancer center or dermatologist at all and ask me just wait for general surgeon to get it off, no rush at all, whether or not biopsy depend on the surgeon. I’m not sure if my surgeon is familiar with melanoma or not, hopefully he knows and do necessary examinations for me.
I don’t know what’s SK, so I did another round of research on SK and found this link:
nodular melanoma with a SK-like clinical presentation
Yes I’m 46, old enough to have SK, but I don’t have anything like this one elsewhere (especially the part exposed) on my body, and this mole is on my lower breast, always covered by cloth, never exposed to sunshine. Even a dermatologist could make mistake, they thought that 28 years old young man got SK, realized it’s actually a nodular melanoma after the Pathologic examination. Shall I trust my family doctor and take the risk or fight for my life more proactively? I choose the latter. I can’t imagine what my young kids will be without me being around.
I want to thank Ramona (a friend I know here) for being so care and helpful, any information help me out is highly appreciated. I believe when the door is closed, there is always a window open for you.
Thank you all my friends!
October 18, 2017 at 2:23 pm #14655Annette CyrParticipant
Hi there Ke!
Good for you for monitoring so closely and for doing some research. This darn stuff is so tricky to diagnose. Not saying your doctor is right or wrong, but it is difficult even for trained specialists like dermatologists. And with a family history of melanoma, there is nothing wrong with being overly cautious. Perhaps see if your doctor can get you in sooner or have an urgent referral to a dermatologist in the interim. I know they are sometimes hard to find in SW Ontario, but worth the opinion if you have to wait until December. Alternatively, call the surgeons office and let them know you are having extreme stress and worry over this and you don’t think you can wait two months – perhaps they can slip you in sooner. Baring that, maybe if you ask for a referral to any available derm and are willing to travel to a centre when one is available. Hoping you have an empathetic family physician. Let us know if you aren’t having any luck. Hang in there…
October 18, 2017 at 2:42 pm #14656AnonymousInactive
Thank you so much for your reply! It looks my family doctor is not going to help.
I looked around this website and noticed a exam I may give a try:
Home > Getting a Diagnosis > MoleMate SIAscopy
I wonder if anybody went through this? It’s walk-in clinic and you can do the exam if the doctor there think you need, and the exam result from a dermatologist will be ready in 72 hours, I wonder if they will help to refer you to melanoma specialist if the exam is positive?
The nearest clinic to me is in Hamilton, just called their nurse who can do MoleMate SIAscopy will be there next Monday, so I plan to go next Monday to give it a try. Any information about this is highly appreciated!
October 19, 2017 at 10:35 am #14666AnonymousInactive
I went through this. My family doctor told me it was nothing during my checkups and just to keep an eye on it. Finally I said I wanted to see a dermatologist and they put me through and I waited 6 months. It was malignant melanoma cancer 1b.
I may be speaking out of line, but Ke, I would ask for a dermatologist referral and be your own advocate. I also don’t want to scare you, so I need to be clear that I am not a doctor; however, this is my honest response which is what you asked for.
October 20, 2017 at 9:20 am #14676Annette CyrParticipant
I would definitely try the molemate route, since it is accessible. With something in hand, it may be easier to get in quickly. Since you aren’t having assistance from your doctor, you could always go to a walk in clinic and ask for a referral as well. GPs are not prevented from removing the mole – so your own doctor could potentially do an excisional biopsy (the best method for melanoma) and remove the entire thing. You may be asked to pay, if indeed it is nothing, but I would rather do that than sit with a potential issue. I am not sure what they charge, but it used to be somewhere in the amount of $75. May be worth it.
October 30, 2017 at 7:12 pm #14813AnonymousInactive
I went to the walk in clinic in Hamilton for SIAscopy last Monday, it’s been a week and still waiting for my results. It says the SIAscopy could be reviewed by a dermatologist within 72 hours and user can get the results in PDF. Looks like I’m not that lucky. Called several times today and finally was told the only dermatologist can do this is too busy, have to wait, don’t know when. This drives me crazy. I feel so helpless.
November 2, 2017 at 9:57 pm #14834AnonymousInactive
A quick update on SIAScopy scan, Melanoma Network reached out to me the next day (Tuesday) and helped me connect to VP of MedX, they quickly fixed the issue with file uploading, my scan was sent to a dermatologist for evaluation within the same day. I got the result on Wednesday, it is a suspicious mole and need biopsy. Now I finally could have a chance to book an appointment with a dermatologist to check it out even if my family doctor doesn’t want to do this for me (he insist it’s SK and don’t need to worry at all).
I want to thank Jane from Melanoma Network and Mike from MedX, you opened a window for me when the door is closed. When I was in trouble, you make me feel there are people care.
I also want to thank Annette and bluejay for sharing information and experiences. Annette, I read through the Melanoma Network site page by page recently, I can’t imaging how much effort you and your team have put in, it’s really helpful for people who need it, I’m really impressed.
I’m waiting for biopsy appointment now, hopefully I can get it done as early as possible. I’ll keep on update, hope this could help people in need like me.
Wish you all the best, be strong and keep positive.
November 3, 2017 at 10:24 am #14842AnonymousInactive
I got your reply in email (not sure why it’s not showing up in the post yet), thank you so much for your kind words, it makes me feel warm in the dark. I’m trying my best to eat health and rest well now, I hope it won’t progress too fast if it turns out to be a melanoma. No matter what the result is, I will learn from the people I met here helping new comers, less fear, be positive, be strong to fight the disease. I believe there is always hope!
November 9, 2017 at 12:21 am #14893AnonymousInactive
It’s been a week, I’m still anxiously waiting for the phone call from the dermatologist office to get an appointment.
Unfortunately, I don’t get the SIAscopy results in PDF, asked both vendor and the clinic staff, no luck.
I’m not sure if I’m the first one did this scan at Hamilton walk in clinic, feels like they are still working on building up procedure for this scan.
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