A marathon runner, spinning teacher and mother of 3 kids, 42-year old Windsor resident Anita Dimambro was diagnosed with melanoma when she was 40. Although she was not a sunscreen user, she was not a sun worshipper. For 9 months before her diagnosis, she was not feeling well. She took her daughter for a check up and asked the doctor to check a mole on her back, which was rubbing against her sports bra. The results from the biopsy, showed she had Stage II malignant melanoma.
“I was aware of this mole for over a year. I didn’t know what melanoma was and how dangerous it could be,” states Anita Dimambro. “I’ve never once said “Why Me”, but I often say if only I would have known more. If we can educate and bring awareness to this form of cancer, I believe we can circumvent later stage diagnosis.”
Anita had surgery to remove the melanoma, followed by treatment with high dose interferon, a biological therapy that became part of her weekday regime for 20 sessions. After finishing her treatment, she was supposed to have another 11 months of injections 3 times per week, which she and her doctor ended early after 6 months as she was losing too much weight to continue the treatment.
“Today at 42, I’m dealing with some residual effects of the cancer treatments and therapies,” adds Dimambro. “My melanoma diagnosis and treatment taught me to take life one a day at a time.”
Anita Dimambro will be presenting “Mommy Has Melanoma” and will be participating in the Question and Answer period following the presentations at the Melanoma Network of Canada – Patient Information Session, held in London May 4th, 2017. Click here for speaker and event information.