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Dutchess_III's avatar

Have you ever had a cancer of any kind?

Asked by Dutchess_III (25575 points ) December 5th, 2013

I had a small black spot removed from my nose a couple of weeks ago. While on an unrelated Dr’s visit I pointed it out. He just said, “Hm. Yeah. Just a mole. We can remove it if you want.”
A couple of days later I called and said, “Yeah. Let’s do it.”
Well, they sent it off to the lab. They just called. It came back as cancer. She didn’t sound at all concerned, just said they need to go a little deeper. Asked if I wanted to wait till January. I said, “No, I’d like to do it as soon as possible.”
Dr. wanted to let the area heal well first (don’t know why. Isn’t that kind of like making a sick inmate healthy before you execute him?) so they scheduled me for the 16th.

I’m freaking out a little here. Have any of you had any experiences like this?

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33 Answers

KNOWITALL's avatar

I had some cells in my lady parts and they burned them out, nothing has recurred.

Early detection is key to preventing the disease from spreading, which is why mammograms and annuals are so important.

Coloma's avatar

I had a mole on my stomach with pre-cancerous cells removed years ago and it never came back. Don’t panic, there are lots of skin cancers that are easily removed that are not melanomas. Breathe in, breathe out. :-)

Dutchess_III's avatar

Thank you honey!

kounoupi's avatar

OK. Here is what happens.
I will try to explain as simply as possible
Cancer cells can develop and do develop in us very day, this does not mean we get cancer everyday. When we are actually diagnosed with cancer, this means that our body failed to defend itself against the initial defect cells so they were “allowed” to progress and form a “team”.

Now, moles can potentially be in part formed by such “teams”. The thing is that, contrary to common belief, cancer is not one disease only; it can take many forms and how it will progress and how it will be treated is related to many factors, eg the organ affected, the type of the dysfunctional cells, the size etc. Depending on these and more factors the doctors can, in our era, determine how the disease will progress, how life threatening it is and how curable it is. And yes, many forms of the disease are curable nowadays.

I know that most of that you probably already knew, but your question may be a reference for other jellies too and also I know from experience that in situations like yours it is good to revise some facts

Having said all that, from what you describe and your doctor’s reaction I think you really don’t need to freak out. Skin moles can be considered neoplasmatic and they may host cancerous cells. It is rather easy to detect the bad ones and it is also quite easy to treat them. From your doctor’s reaction, the fact that they didn’t schedule right there and then for a mole removal, the fact that they gave you the choice now or later after the initial histological examination I gather that you caught it at a very early stage and there is nothing to worry about.

Oh I almost forgot, your doctor probably wanted it to heal well first to minimize the healing period after and maybe to minimize the scarring.

And finally, no I haven’t a similar experience, not yet at least, but I live in a country blessed with sunshine and residents and tourists not so cautious for their skin. Chin up, smile and go for it, you will barely remember the experience in a few months.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I said I was freaking out a LITTLE! A little. Just a little.

Thank you Dr. K.

kounoupi's avatar

sending a big hug to take some of the little freak out away:-)

Dutchess_III's avatar

Thanks Doc! Hugs are the best.

DWW25921's avatar

I’m glad you’re ok! I haven’t had cancer personally but I lost someone this year. My 4th grade teacher. We were pen pals for years and I sent her a Christmas card and just a few days ago her husband emailed me and told me the news. I knew she had a “thing” but I wasn’t sure what it was or how serious. Take of yourself, ask lots of questions and don’t be afraid to show up to the emergency room if there’s something strange going on, no matter how small.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Thank you @DWW25921. Thank goodness I have insurance.

Rarebear's avatar

Don’t freak out. You’re going to be okay. Your cancer has about a 98% cure rate. They will cut on your face—which will have the happy side effect of improving your looks. :)

Dutchess_III's avatar

O shut up!!!! Maybe I’ll get a nose job out of it! Except…I like my nose just they way it is. :?

JLeslie's avatar

Not that I know of.

As long as it isn’t melanoma, which they would have told you if it was, it isn’t much of a deal. Good you brought it up to your doctor, and going forward you should probably get a derm check once a year, which is recommended anyway.

Dutchess_III's avatar

It was a basal (sp) cancer, just as @Rarebear predicted it would be (I called them back to ask them specifically.) It’s a nasal basal cancer (I made that up.)

HEY! This is going to work out great! My husband, who just doesn’t show a lot of physical affection and stuff, came down from his office to get something to eat. I moved up beside him as he was fixing his sandwich, laid my head on his shoulder and said, “I don’t feel good. I have a cold and I have cancer. Sniff.”
He turned around and gave me a big hug!

JLeslie's avatar

@Dutchess_III Always a silver lining. Reminds me o when Gracie Allen said she wished George would have another affair because she wanted the matching serving bowl to the platter he bought her the last time.

Rarebear's avatar

Well, he just hugged you because it’s the last time he’ll actually see your nose. When do you get it amputated, anyway?

Dutchess_III's avatar

OH SHUT UP RAREBEAR!!! On the 16th.

YARNLADY's avatar

I had some specks in my breast removed using a form of liposuction, and apparently that was enough.

Leanne1986's avatar

I hope that after 16th you can put this scare behind you, hearing the word cancer is terrifying regardless of how calm the doctors seem to be but it sounds like the outcome will be positive. @kounoupi Thank you for the information, I was not aware of most of what you said but it is very useful to know.

yankeetooter's avatar

My mom has colon cancer. She had surgery last February, and it looks quite likely that they got it all.

chyna's avatar

I had two basil cell carcinoma places removed from my head in the last couple months.
Nothing to it and the doctor did such a good job, he didn’t have to shave any of my hair off.
He was able to biopsy them right after he removed them. That was nice to know immediately that it wasn’t melanoma.
What a sneaky way to get your insurance to pay for a nose job.

JLeslie's avatar

I burn the top of my head constantly, even though I usually try to be careful. Thin hair and a wide part. Damn thyroid!

Dutchess_III's avatar

It is so nice to know so many cancerous Jellies! Wait… Thank you very much guys. ♥

Rarebear's avatar

Except for me. I’m just a brat, and proud of it!

Dutchess_III's avatar

Yes you are @Rarebear.

That is a bad wife, @Blackberry.

Rarebear's avatar

But I did make you feel better, right?

Just so you know, after you PMed me this morning on FB, I looked it up. You’ll do fine.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Yes, you always make me feel better @Rarebear. Well, unless you make me cry!! I looked it up too. It’s usually not fatal. Hugs. Thanks. :) I’m fine, really.

jonsblond's avatar

After a PET scan a little over a year ago I was told that the nodule on my right lung was most likely malignant and it possibly spread to a lymph node. It took two lung biopsies to determine it was non-cancerous. That was a terrifying 6 weeks of scan after scan and waiting for more information.

I had severe dysplasia when I was 36 and the precancerous cells were removed from my cervic. That was stressful and uncomfortable.

Dutchess_III's avatar

It should be illegal to do that kind of shit @jonsblond. To proclaim it “most likely malignant” like you’re giving a weather report, when you aren’t really going to know for another 6 weeks. Shit.

KNOWITALL's avatar

Been missing you @Rarebear.

jonsblond's avatar

@Dutchess_III It all started with an x-ray of the chest. I was told that a spot was found on my right lung and they would need to investigate it further. The second week I had a CTscan and my doctor told me it looked suspicious and more tests would be needed. The following week I had the PETscan. The actual words used on the PETscan report were “high probability of malignancy with possible metastasis”. A packet of information from the local cancer center was sent to me as well as an appointment card with an oncologist. It took 3 more weeks and 2 biopsies before we found out it wasn’t cancerous. It was really only 3 weeks of thinking it could be cancer, but the first 3 weeks were also full of fear and anxiety. It was the scariest time of my life.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I can only imagine @jonsblond. :(

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