Wednesday, May 1, 2013

365 Days of Memories Take FOUR -- Day 120

Warning... some of these images are not for the faint of heart.
On March 7th 2011 I was sitting in my bedroom working on sewing a quilt for my nephew and my back itched... that simple itch led to me discovering this;
This funky looking mole on my back that immediately
left me thinking something wasn't right.
Long story short, the next day I called a dermatologist office in town, a day later they saw me and less than a week after that my back looked like this;
A five inch incision for the .35 mm Stage I Malignant Melanoma I was incredibly lucky to have caught myself.  Especially considering it was on my back, a place I rarely look.
I am lucky.
Stage I Melanoma comes along with a 99% cure rate, though deligence is key since many melanoma survivors have experienced multiple melanomas.  Beyond stage I the survival and cure rates drop dramatically.
Since my diagnosis I have had 14 other moles removed.  Only 3 of those moles have been considered 'benign' and 6 of those were considered atypical enough to require additional surgery.  The rest will be monitored for any changes.
I've had people tell me that melanoma really isn't as bad as people make it out to be.
Tell me, does this look "not that bad"...

Melanoma isn't something to joke around about.
I'm not a person who spent her teens or young adult years vegging in the tanning bed.
In fact, I probably spent a total of less than 45 minutes of my life in a tanning bed.
I have no family history.
One bad burn in your childhood can lead to melanoma.
Know the facts that I had no clue about.
Melanoma is the leading cancer in young adults.
It is the leading killer of women aged 25-30.
It is also HIGHLY CURABLE when caught in its earliest stages.
May is Skin Cancer
Melanoma Awareness Month.
Help spread the Awareness.

1 comment:

Optimistic Existentialist said...

SO important to bring awareness like this my friend. Thank you.