Skin cancer update

To all my fellow runners and colleagues who've followed C25K. Like many of you a few years ago, I decided to change my lifestyle, lose weight, get fit etc and start back running. To my surprise last year I was diagnosed with Basil skin cancer on my ear, I write this in the hope it may help others who spend time outdoors and make some more aware of the need to cover up from April to October. I am a self confessed total wimp, although I have no fear of the dentist, I do have a dislike of Doctors and more so hospitals. I was gobsmacked to be told it was cancer and although skin cancer was somewhat dismissive thinking it was no real risk to life. Today, I had the operation to remove it, I was so close to running out the hospital, but the doctors told me, I can do that, but sooner or later I would face a worse situation and with the help of the nurses and first class treatment and encouragement from the staff, plucked up the courage to go through with it. This next bit I write in more detail, because if I had known what to expect, I might not have been so fearful. I had the biopsy back in September, in a small room under a local anesthetic and was out in minutes. I expected the same for the removal of the growth, but was wrong. I was asked to change into gowns and prepare for theater, this set me into panic mode, it was all my worst thought's come to reality, I have a total fear of surgery and never thought I would be faced with 6 medical staff awaiting me in an operating theater. The staff were outstanding, most reassuring to me throughout the procedure, I had to have skin grafts from another area to repair the part of the ear that was removed, the operation was nowhere near as bad as I expected, the only really painful part was the needle for the anesthetic, which they gave me to shots of, I am now as I write wearing my running hat (skull type) as protection since I keep bleeding still 6 hours after the operation. I hope this write up helps others to be aware of the need to cover up in the months mentioned and to know what procedures you may expect. I was a wimp with no need and had I known what to expect, may well not have got myself into an anxious state prior to the operation. I know this as no relevance to C25K, but of course as runners you are exposed to the suns rays, that despite such an awful few months, can be so damaging without you ever realizing. Best wishes to all me fellow runners and those wishing to change their lives.

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15 Replies

  • Well done on going through with the op, it must have been really hard to face your fears. Hope you have a quick recovery , all the best to you Hussain and i think it's really good that you've brought this issue to the attention of other c25kers. Hope you manage to get some rest and recovery time tonight x

  • Hi Ian , I'm glad to hear that the op went well and that they've removed the growth . The worst is behind you now and you can concentrate on healing and recovery .

    I totally understand where you're coming from . I had a lump removed from my neck and I got myself in a right panic over it . It's such a relief though when the op is over and done with !

    Take it easy for a bit , lots of TLC and a coupla pints of Guinness and you'll be right ! :-) xxx

  • I hope you're feeling better now Hussain. I don't blame you for being worried about the op. Who wouldn't be !

  • I'm really glad you posted this here Ian as it's a very important issue for us all seeing as we're out and about in all this glorious weather so much. (Although perhaps a little less wind and rain might be more welcome at the moment :D ) Well done on going through with the op. It's all pretty scary stuff until you're the other side of it and I hope you have a speedy recovery. I'm sure the 10 days will soon whizz by and you'll be back out there enjoying all your running and cycling again xx

  • Glad you plucked up the courage to go through with it and that it turned out to be better than you feared! Wishing you a speedy recovery!

  • Hope you are back up and running soon my friend.

    Very wise words and absolutely necessary to highlight this issue.

    Get well soon Hussain

  • Thanks Hussain - wise words and advice. It's so easy for us to forget things like this in our quest for fitness and certainly something I wouldn't have thought about until I burnt myself. Wishing you a speedy recovery!

  • I'm glad it went well for you, and thanks for the warning. I live in the south of France in summer and never wear sun block - silly me...I shall remember you and remember to put some on this year xx

  • Thank you for posting this. I've got a few friends who have had/have skin cancer and it's frightening how tiny and inconspicuous the cancer looks but the consequences can be fatal. Luckily, if it's caught early enough it's entirely curable, as in your case.

    I wish you a speedy recovery.

  • Get well soon. Well done for going through with the op too - and thank you for posting about the dangers. I lost a friend to some sort of skin cancer a couple of years ago but sad to say I think she'd ignored the signs until it was too late. Do as you did and the outcome is indescribably better. All the very best to you.

  • So pleased you posted this, Ian. You've been through a horrible experience but you faced your fears and conquered them. Hope your recovery is swift, pain-free and complete. xx

  • Thanks Dave, in terms of caps, I have a few none of which are special. I don't like the sound of it keep bleeding, that's what mine was doing and wouldn't heal, I'd certainly get that looked at, best wishes.

  • This is very important. I am very pale and obviously I need to make sure that I don't only protect my face, but my ears and the back of my neck, too. Thank you for your post and for sharing your story so honestly. I imagine that this process hasn't been easy for you or your family to go through, but hopefully you will recover quickly and your message will spread to ensure that this doesn't happen to anyone again.

  • Many thanks for your advice and well done to you.

  • Inspiring letter, Hussain. Probably you are helping more people be aware of skin cancer. You write empathetically and we are all cheering you on. Maybe treat yourself to a slow day tomorrow... let your body rest. Best wishes!

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