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Young Adults with Melanoma
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UPDATED: Newly Diagnosed and Lost

UPDATE: I wanted to update everyone. I had my WLE this week. The incision is just over 3" long and required 13 stitches. The doctor said it was barely melanoma and they got it all. In 2 weeks I have an appointment with the dermatologist for my full body check.

Thank you to everyone for answering my questions and your reassuring words! I'm incredibly grateful to be putting this chapter behind me.

Hi everyone! I didn't think I'd ever join a community like this, but I'm so glad to have found y'all! I went to the dermatologist for the first time 2 weeks ago for an unrelated issue. They insisted on checking for moles and shaved a tiny one that the doctor said was suspiciously dark. He reassured me it wasn't cancer, but they wanted to err on the side of caution.

This Wednesday I got a call that the biopsy showed it's early melanoma. No mention of the stage and I was too numb to ask. I just turned 30 and the mole was supposed to be no big deal. They scheduled in office surgery in early June to remove the skin around where the mole was.

My grandmother started her treatment for Stage IV melanoma the day before I got the call and our whole family has been focused on this terrible disease.

I may scream at the next person who says it's no big deal and I shouldn't be upset. It's a big deal to me and I'm sick of a few people telling me it's not even a real cancer. I'm terrified!

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Hi Jackie,

Such a scary disease! Sounds like you have a familial link. I do too. I tested negative for any genes they know about in our family that Carry melanoma. But since my dad had it, I have it and my brother had it we know it runs in our family. Sounds like you’re doing all the right things with your procedures. Next will come your WLE. I have been in this battle since 2009 so if you need any help or just want to vent let me know.

Robyn

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Hi Robyn! So sorry you're going through it, too. I'm so completely new to this, so sorry for my questions. What's a WLE?

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Wide Local Excision. Please make sure you are seeing a melanoma specialist and that they refer you to a surgeon that deals with melanoma. It’s very important because it is such a different cancer. Once you have the WLE, then they can stage it and figure out what to do next.

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Oh, okay! Thank you so much for all of this info. I'm so new that I don't know what questions to ask. How do I find out of the doctor is a melanoma specialist?

The one good thing coming out of all of this is it's promoting my best friend to go to the dermatologist and get her suspicious moles checked. :)

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Hi Jackie, you just have to ask. Are you seeing a derm?

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Yes, I'm seeing a dermatologist.

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Hi Robyn

My son, my sister and I all

have melanoma. What genetics evaluations should I ask

for? Nothing was offered. Thanks.

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Hi, do you see a dermatologist or an oncologist? Regardless of who you see if you explain to them your family history they can recommend a genetics counselor for you. I honestly don’t know if it

matters much though because if you know that it runs in your family, The genetics testing test for genes they are aware that carry melanoma. I tested negative. The Dr. told me I could come back in three years and be retested for new genes that they were aware of. I don’t know if you really need to.

I hope that kind of helps.

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