Tuesday, September 16, 2008


I have gotten many comments and phone calls from people wanting to know more about what is going on with the mole on my leg. I guess I should start at the beginning. Around the end of my pregnancy with Colt I noticed that a mole that I have had for many years on the right side of my leg just above my knee was a little inflamed. About a month after I had him I made an appointment with my dermatologist to have it looked at. She was not concerned about it and said that sometimes pregnancy will cause things like this to happen and to just keep watching it and make sure it does not change anymore. A year later it had not changed at all in looks but I always had this nagging feeling that I really should just have it taken off. I made another appointment to go back to her and she again told me that it did not look like anything that was a problem but if it made me feel better then she would take it off for me. I had a punch biopsy done which was no big deal, a little numbing in my leg and 4 stitches later I left and thought nothing of it. After 9 days I returned to get my stitches out and she told me that the biopsy had come back abnormal. It was not melanoma but it was acting in a way that told her it may be heading that direction. She told me the best thing to do would be to go back in and take out a bigger chunk of my leg to make sure that they take out all the bad cells that may still be left behind. A couple days later I headed back to the doctor for the 2nd procedure and brought Dave with me for support. It was not a real big deal as far as procedures go, she numbed me up a lot more this time and as Dave puts it "took a piece of skin about the size of a small trout" out of my leg. It took 8 stitches underneath and 18 on top to close it back up. I finally got the results back today and they said while there were still some bad cells left in the middle part of the biopsy all of the cells around it looked great and they got all of the "bad stuff" out of me. I go back in tomorrow to get my stitches out. I have basically had stitches in my leg for a month now between the two procedures. Its not that bad but it feels kind of tight and itchy in that spot. I have been able to work out pretty normal for the most part, the only thing I can not do is any type of lunging or squatting as it could break open the incision. I am so glad that I continued to follow up on this and not let it get out of control. However, now I have to go back in every 6 months for a check-up because I am considered higher risk for this to happen again. I am just going to make sure I wear sunscreen daily on my face (even in the winter!!) and stay out of the sun as much as possible! No more laying out and sunbathing for me:)
When I told Dave about the biopsy being abnormal his remark is "that's no big deal NOBODY dies from melanoma anymore." So I then go and start reading about it online and find all these articles that talk about how cases of melanoma have risen 50% in the last 25 years! One article stated that women between the ages of 15 and 39 have a 1 in 389 change of being diagnosed with melanoma. Melanoma is also the #1 cancer in women ages 25-29 and second behind breast cancer for women ages 30-34. I am not trying to say any of this to scare any of you, but just be aware of what it is and check your body regulary for any irregular moles or moles that have changed shape or color. This article is a great source for early detection.

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