• how can they tell?

    Asked by sugarbear on Thursday, April 11, 2013

    how can they tell?

    i was originally told i had ovarian cancer-operated on and then was told it was melanoma -how did that switch ? is there something in the pathology -different cells for different cancers? i question this because now they are boggled by no outside original site?r they wrong?
    isit some other caner?im not a dr -im just wondering -its veryconfusing.....

    4 Answers from the Community

    4 answers
    • Dick_K's Avatar

      Melanoma is a very tricky and dangerous cancer and you appear to be in a rather “rare” category. First, there are cases where melanoma can mimic ovarian cancer. Second, it is less rare but advanced melanoma can be detected where there has been no evidence of a primary site.

      My advice if you have not already done so is to have a second pathological review done and be sure to obtain copies of the pathology reports for your own review. Post results, you will get help understanding them.

      over 4 years ago
    • SueRae1's Avatar

      I agree with Dick_K get another team to review your pathology slides, both from your biopsy (if you had one) and surgery. Type of cancer is determined by the composition of the cancer cells on the slide. A pathologist can identify what organ the cancer is from, and based on that if ti's a primary site or metastasized cancer. Though unusual some cancer metastasized with out the person ever having a primary tumor.

      over 4 years ago
    • CAS1's Avatar

      I know I have touched upon this in other posts. The new thinking is that it does not really mattet where the cancer originates. What matters is what are the mutations and what are the cancer cells characteristics or personality. Call and ask your Onc for a joint meeting with the pathologist.

      But by all means get full copies of all of your testing and results and get a second opinion at a renowed cancer facility.

      over 4 years ago
    • melanomamama's Avatar

      My father had metastatic skin cancer (a rare cancer called Merkel Cell Carcinoma) that was diagnosed only after it was found inside him. They never knew where or when the primary site happened on his skin.
      Constance Emerson Crooker

      over 4 years ago

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