Monday, January 31, 2011

Melanoma Skin Cancer; The Day We Found Out!

Last Monday, January 24th, 2011, I received a phone call at 8am from my Doctor's office and was told that my Doctor needed to speak with me as soon as possible; at noon that same day Kevin and I were told that I have Clark's level 2 Melanoma Skin Cancer with a Breslow thickness of 0.29.

Statistics show that over 50% of adults think that skin cancer is "no big deal" and we fell into that group UNTIL we learned that Melanoma Skin Cancer, unlike basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma,  is the most serious and deadly form of skin cancer because it's an invasive type of cancer, which means that it can spread throughout your body IF it is not detected in it's earliest stages.

"My God, my God, how could this be?  Please spare my life, Lord Jesus!  I'll be okay, Lord, but please, Lord, spare my life for the sake of Hannah & Sophia & Kevin and my Mom & Dad;" my heart ached for those who would survive me, more than it ached for myself, because I knew IF this deadly disease killed me I would end up in Paradise walking on the Streets of Gold because as a BELIEVER in JESUS CHRIST I have the promise of Eternal Life.

Thankfully, my cancer had not spread throughout my body; had weeks or months passed before it's detection, it could have spread and my chances of survival would have diminished greatly.

Last Thursday, January 27th, I underwent surgical removal ("excision") of the melanoma; surgery at this stage usually cures the disease.

I'm sharing my story because I want lives to be saved as a result of this WARNING!  Please heed this warning and take it very seriously and please share it with others. 

The survival rate for patients whose melanoma is detected early, before the tumor has penetrated the epidermis, is about 99 percent.34 The survival rate falls to 15 percent for those with advanced disease.3

My life has been spared and I am very thankful.  From this day forward, my prayer is that the Lord will work through my life and BLESS others. 

Please stay tuned for further posts regarding "how" my melanoma was detected and life changing lessons I have learned as a result of this experience. 

Ecclesiastes 3:1  To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven.

3. American Cancer Society. Cancer Facts & Figures 2009. Atlanta: American Cancer Society; 2009.
34. Huang CL, Halpern AC. Management of the patient with melanoma. In: Rigel DS, Friedman RJ, Dzubow LM, Reintgen DS, Bystryn J-C, Marks R, eds. Cancer of the Skin. New York, NY: Elsevier Saunders; 2005:265-75.