Home Forums Melanoma: Newly Diagnosed – Stages I & II Melanoma Stage 1b & breast cysts?

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  • #21899
    Joanie60
    Participant

    I had melanoma in 2000 (Breslow 0.23 & Clarks II) on my right thigh which was removed by wide excision.

    I had a shave biopsy Jan 31, 2014 which was diagnosed “Malignant Melanoma, Invasive, 0.62mm (although tumor present at margins), Non-ulcerated, Mitotic figures 3 per square mm.” on the site of a previous excision of a severely dysplastic mole on my upper left chest.

    I had a wide excision done of the area on my upper left chest area (really wide!!! My scar is fully seven inches long) in March. The path report says “Residual Malignant Melanoma, Breslow thickness 0.32mm, Clark Level III, no mitotic figures, no ulceration, regression present, margins at 12:00 and 3:00 positive for melanoma in situ”. Also had a sentinal node biopsy done…two nodes removed from under left arm and two from my chest area, all four nodes were negative.

    I have surgery scheduled next week for removal of margins again.

    Here is my question (finally haha). My gyn has been following some cysts in my left breast. I have had a mammogram and sonogram done twice, and am scheduled to have another six month follow up shortly. I totally forgot about this while going thru the melanoma thing. Can they be connected?? Lymph nodes are clear but could Melanoma present as cysts since they are so close in proximity (left chest and left breast)?

    I know I just have to get the ultrasound done again, and quickly, but thought I would throw this out, see if anyone has had a similar situation?

    I am new to this forum, so glad you guys are here!!

    Joanie :D

    #63961
    tbeau
    Participant

    Hi Joanie

    Welcome to the forum. Sorry to hear abut your new diagnosis and your scar. I was diagnosed with Stage 1b melanoma in July 2012 on my left thigh. SLNB was negative. In July 2013 I had a mammo and it came back suspicious. I had several other mammos, a core needle biopsy and eventually a lumpectomy. I was concerned that maybe it was melanoma. It was not. It came back as precancerous but had nothing to do with melanoma. I hope this helps you some. Good luck to you and take care.

    #63962
    Joanie60
    Participant

    That does help, thanks! I guess I am trying not to freak out about the fact that both areas are so close to each other! Wish my suspicious mammo was on the right side…. But I take comfort from your story. Thanks for taking the time to respond :-)

    #63963
    Rojam
    Participant

    hi joanie,

    i too had a breast lump not long after my melanoma diagnosis. my melanoma was on my back at the base of my neck.

    my lump turned out to be a cyst which was drained and so far not returned.

    i hope all your results come back clear and quickly for you.

    kind regards

    jane

    x

    #63964
    Joanie60
    Participant

    My update: After ultrasound, radiologist ordered a bi-lateral breast MRI. The results from that show a “0.8cm enhancing mass” on my RIGHT breast, not the left at all???

    Next stop, MRI guided core biopsy. After my second wide area excision on the melanoma on my left chest which is scheduled for Monday.

    I am hoping that bad things don’t always come in threes!!!

    I have no clue on anything related to breast cancer so I am seriously going to take this one step at a time. Get through the core biopsy and see if I have to learn more 🙄

    But if any of the peeps have suggestions/experiences, bring them on!!!

    Hugs to you all, Joanie

    #63965
    tbeau
    Participant

    Hi Joanie

    You are going through a lot! Both of these issues at the same time. UGH!

    I had a core needle biopsy and it came back as atypical florid hyperplasia and then had a lumpectomy and that was about a year ago. It was precancerous.

    Catherine suggested that I look up Dr. Susan Love’s Research Foundation (Google it and you’ll find it) as a resource for breast issues. It was a great resource and you might want to look into it.

    I hope this helps you some. My heart goes out to you. Good luck with your WLE and the biopsy! I’ll be thinking of you and will be looking for an update.

    #63966
    Joanie60
    Participant

    Thanks :D

    If your lump was precancerous, that means you didn’t have to take Tamoxofin or anything else? I can live with that!!! I think I am just overwhelmed. Now I have two file folders going (melanoma and breast mass)…and I know NOTHING about breast cancer. Maybe I can keep it that way lol.

    I’m fairly informed on Melanoma, having it once in 2000, now again, but also knowing I was at risk since I was a teenager. I think my first mole removal was when I was 13. But have never given any thought to breast cancer.

    Well, I will have answers soon! And I will post an update. I love this forum!

    Joanie

    #63967
    tbeau
    Participant

    Hi Joanie:

    It was recommended that I take tamoxifen for 5 years. After mindful consideration I declined tamoxifen. My sister took it for 5 years and had a lot of side effects and still developed breast cancer. The choice to take a drug such as tamoxifen is a very personal. After looking at the numbers, it would only have improved my chances of developing breast cancer by 2 percent. I chose not to take it.

    I agree with you that this foum is great. It has helped me tremendously.

    Take care. ;)

    #63968
    Joanie60
    Participant

    Hi Tbeau~

    On this exciting Saturday night, I am flipping thru some old posts and found yours from your breast mass scare and how all that played out. I know it must have been awful going thru it, but I appreciated your comments and comments from your supporters~I found it very helpful.

    If there is a family link between melanoma and breast cancer, is there any point in being tested for BRCA-1 and BRCA-2 ?

    I’ve probably mentioned this but here is my family history: I had melanoma (stage 1a in 2000, currently stage 1b). Mom and maternal granddad: melanoma. Maternal aunt: breast cancer twice (probably about age 65 then 75??). Dad: prostate cancer (does this fit in anywhere?!?!?).

    I know, I know, I should really just throw my laptop and cell phone out the window till next weekend!! And to think the generation before us did this without internet…and probably without even saying the word “cancer” lol, certainly not the word breast 🙄

    Joanie

    #63969
    tbeau
    Participant

    Hi Joanie:

    Your Saturday night was more exciting then mine…I fell asleep on the couch about 9 pm. LOL.

    Whenever I have an ailment, symptom, ache, pain or actual diagnosis I go right to the internet. I guess that can be good and bad.

    When my breast issue came up my oncologist asked for my family history of cancer going back to great grandparents and even of my nieces and nephews. My family’s cancer history qualified me to be tested for BRCA-1 and BRCA-2 as well as for Lynch Syndrome. It was covered by my insurance. Thankfully they all came back negative.

    I wanted to know as much as possible. That’s me but I know that is not how everyone is.

    You may want to discuss the testing and whether it is covered by insurance with your oncologist. My oncologist had a genetic counselor work with me and she was great.

    Waiting for results of any of these things can be very stressful. I find this forum to be the absolute best forum to discuss melanoma. When I branched out to discuss breast issues I wondered if it was veering to far off topic. That was not the case. This forum is a good place to be. It’s very educational and supportive.

    Continued good luck to you. :)

    #63970
    Joanie60
    Participant

    Tbeau~

    Should I discuss with Melanoma Oncologist or Breast Oncologist??

    Or maybe I should just wait and see if breast biopsy is positive first haha

    Joanie

    #63971
    tbeau
    Participant

    Maybe ask both? lol

    #63972
    Joanie60
    Participant

    Today I am off to see the Breast Oncologist, I guess to schedule MRI guided biopsy. Nervous and scared. Hope to find out melanoma margins are clear this Friday. I’m not liking all this overlap haha.

    I will ask Breast Oncologist about genetic testing, thanks! Then I’ll ask Melanoma oncologist when I see him next week.

    Joanie

    #63973
    tbeau
    Participant

    Hi Joanie:

    Best of luck to you today. This stuff is so nerve racking! So sorry you have to go through this. Please let us know your results so we can help you.

    #63974
    Joanie60
    Participant

    Melanoma margins are CLEAR!!! yay!! Stitches out next week and that should be it for awhile.

    More waiting on the breast mass. New oncologist wants to try to find it on ultrasound, and therefore be able to do an ultrasound-guided biopsy instead of MRI-guided biopsy.

    As to genetic testing: new doc said if I am negative for breast cancer, we’ll talk about genetic testing. If I am positive, it will be the hottest priority. She brought it up, not me, but we have a fair amount of cancer in our family. Good news: none of us die from it!! But I do have a 26 year old daughter so I’m game if doc recommends it.

    I feel like one of the 600lb elephants has been lifted off my chest. Yay!!

    Joanie

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