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Newly Diagnosed

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      Looks like I’m joining this club and I’m certainly a bit unsure of the future. I had a suspicious mole my wife told me about, it took months to get an appointment with a dermatologist but it’s come back as melanoma. It’s .95mm breslow depth and now I’m waiting for my first consult with an oncologist. Currently I’m staged at T1b. I managed to get an appointment at Duke November 27th. Needless to say after using Google (which I’m not doing anymore) I was convinced I’ll be gone in 12 months. I found this forum and read through so many posts and it’s really improved my stress. I wanted to say thank you for all that post and support. I will update my journey on this forum. Hoping for negative in my lymph nodes of course but we will see. So happy my wife spotted this as it’s in a place I would never see.
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          Hope it all turned out well! I actually google search melanoma but only the news section! There are a lot of exciting advances rolling out. Silver linings everyplace!
          Mike N
            Hi Richard,
            In the year 2000 my punch biopsy was 0.85mm and the wide level excision (WLE) was 0.95mm.
            I have not gone through treatment other than the wide level excision and have been no evidence of disease (NED) since. I did have many trips to my dermatologist and had many suspicious moles (dysplastic) removed early after my diagnosis.
            I have been the poster child for sun safety, but continue to be out in the sun gardening, swimming, bicycling but with protective clothing and sun block.
            All my best to you. Just wanted to drop a note of encouragement based on experience.
              If you are indeed 1B it is entirely possible that you will not require more treatment at all! I believe there are some trials for immunotherapy for 2b which I wish I had access to but 1B involves careful sun care.
              Chris R
                We all have different journeys and hopefully yours will be be okay. As point of reference, and hope, I was diagnosed with a 9 mm (yes, no decimal) lesion on my head in 2019. Even being that thick, it did not travel to any lymph nodes.

                Long sleeves, big brim hat and sunscreen are my new realities…as well as enjoying every day.

                  Hi all. I do appreciate the responses! I had a wide local excision and two lymph nodes removed. There was no melanoma present in the excision or lymph nodes so good news for me. I am now in the process of slowly replacing clothes, all long sleeves now and wearing wide brimmed hats. Sunscreen is part of my daily routing now as well. Chris R, 9mm that is certainly good news and thank you for sharing!! Everything you read about melanoma in the head is a bit discouraging.

                  For others starting this journey I’d recommend not to hesitate changing doctors if you feel it’s not being taken seriously enough. After I was diagnosed I was told ENT would contact me to schedule a surgical consult. I went three days and heard nothing. I was fortunate enough to live two hours away from a university. I contacted them and had my consult the next week and surgery the following week with results the week after that. I did not have to go through Christmas wondering what the results would be. Thanks again for the responses!

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