pglurie's Journey with Skin Cancer - Melanoma

Patient: Skin Cancer - Melanoma

Patient Info: Currently in active treatment (initial surgery, receiving chemo rounds/radiation), Diagnosed: over 5 years ago, Female, Age: 72, Stage IIIA, BRAF mutation positive: Don't Know, c-kit positive: Don't Know

  1. 1
    • pglurie
    • Experience with Skin Cancer - Melanoma
    about 5 years ago
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    Diagnosed

    Oh No

    I did not think there was anything seriously wrong with me, I felt fine. I just had a lump in my groin that did not go away. I did not want to have it taken out until I knew what it was, even though my doctor thought I should have it removed immediately. Thank goodness I did not, since it turned out to be rather extensive surgery. I had 18 lymph nodes in my groin and pelvis removed. The main one and the adjacent ones had melanoma cells. The rest were clean.

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  2. 2
    • pglurie
    • Experience with Skin Cancer - Melanoma
    about 5 years ago
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    Health insurance issue

    Oh No

    I was in a medicare advantage plan. It did not want to refer me for treatment. Three weeks of runaround. It took my mind off the diagnosis because I was fighting the insurance people. I ended up leaving the plan and going to straight medicare and paying the 20%. I haven't seen the bills yet, but I will pay whatever they are so my treatment can continue.

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  3. 3
    • pglurie
    • Experience with Skin Cancer - Melanoma
    about 5 years ago
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    Full lymph node dissection

    Procedure or Surgery

    I was hospitalized for 4 days and in bed for about a week there after. I am now 7 weeks post op. I am living my normal busy life and feeling stronger every day. I do have significant lymphadema and just started treatment for that.

    Went as Expected: Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Disagree
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  4. 4
    • pglurie
    • Experience with Skin Cancer - Melanoma
    about 5 years ago
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    Clinical Trial

    I will be starting a clinical trial next month. It is either "ipi" or interferon. I have heard lots of horror stories about interferon and so hope for the ipi. I hope it works.

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  5. 5
    • pglurie
    • Experience with Skin Cancer - Melanoma
    about 5 years ago
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    trial to begin next month

    Drug or Chemo Therapy

    I am entering a trial of either interferon or ipi I heard lots of horror stories about interferon. I am hoping for the ipi and that it works. I will know some time in later December.

    Easy to Do: Not Specified
    Minimal Side Effects: Not Specified
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Not Specified
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  6. 6
    • pglurie
    • Experience with Skin Cancer - Melanoma
    about 5 years ago
    pglurie's Avatar

    Decision Point

    After a great deal of back and forth and frustration from the oncologist I dropped out of the clinical trial. I was put into the interferon side and could not in good faith give up a year of my life for a very uncertain result. I decided to instead wait for another trial or just take care of myself emotionally and spritually and physically. I feel good about my decision. I had the now diagnosed melanoma for about 20 years, but no one thought it was anything to be concerned about. Can you imagine I was diagnosed this year as Stage #3 malignant melanoma after all this time carrying the disease...

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