Home Forums Melanoma Diagnosis: Stages I &II pregnant and scared of more melanoma

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  • #20920
    BigRed1984
    Participant

    Greetings guys! It has been a while since I posted. In general I am doing much better emotionally now that it is has been about 11 months since my melanoma. However, I am newly pregnant, and it is causing me to freak out about my skin again. My doctors at Stanford told me to go ahead and get pregnant, nothing to worry about. But I am terrified I will get another mel, or present with metastatic disease which is a loopy fear since mine was in-situ. When I was first diagnosed I was like…NO. MORE. BABIES. That faded and now here I am pregnant and afraid of cancer. I don’t have a question, I guess I just need to talk to someone who understands, even if that is a forum. When I bring up my melanoma to my husband he gets anxious, when I talk to my friends they get uncomfortable. That is why I love you guys. :)

    #58429
    cohanja
    Participant

    First, congratulations on the news. I think what you’re feeling is totally normal, I’m male so I haven’t experienced the pregnant part, but definitely the worry part. It sounds like you’re in good hands, and even in the unlikely event of further skin problems it would likely be something caught very early. As far as the in-situ spreading, I think you’re in like a 99.9% rate that wouldn’t happen. Not to discount your feelings, just to reassure you. Hey, this is the place to vent, we understand!

    #58430
    Catherine Poole
    Keymaster

    You are doing everything you can to catch another melanoma early, if it should happen. That is the best anyone can humanly do!. You are being followed carefully too by experts in the field as I remember it. Try to relax and enjoy your upcoming joy. Peace of mind through exercise, relaxation, meditation, massage etc, can be found..take good care of yourself.

    #58431
    Jenni
    Participant

    BigRed, CONGRATS!!!!!

    We are almost in the same boat (age, insitu diagnosis, one child, etc) and I am working on baby #2! I have been trying to get pregnant for a YEAR now! UGH, frustrating! Hopefully we can conceive in the next few months and we can do this together :)

    I know how it feels. If you remember my history, I was diagnosed in Dec 2009 (insitu) and got pregnant in late Feb 2010 with my daughter. I was terrified, I thought I had sentenced myself to death. Well, I am still here. I did have a mole slightly change a few months into my pregnancy and I took it off. Simple as that. It was a severely atypical and so they did a WLE to be safe and all was clear. However, after that nothing really changed too much for me, maybe 1 or 2 little moles got slightly darker. Some I left some I took off, but nothing was melanoma. Just keep an eye on your skin as you do and if it changes significantly remove it. Just keep in mind that moles can slightly darker during pregnancy but if it doesn’t grow and keep changing it should be just fine! Biopsies are fine when you are pregnant, I had two even taken off of my belly in the 2nd trimester. :)

    Again, I get it, I have been there and yet for some reason I am going to do it again :) Guess that it was being pregnant and being a mommy is about. I love my daughter more than anything and I think she needs a sibling :)

    Jenni

    #58432
    BigRed1984
    Participant

    Thanks for the comforting replies! I am just overwhelmed right now with joy and fear! I know I have all the tools at my disposal to catch another early. Whew. Life and the realization I am growing a life is heavy stuff.

    Jenni! I hear you on the frustrations of trying to become pregnant. Our first took just under a year to conceive and we had to use clomid for 2 cycles. This time it was maybe 5 months or so, no fertility drugs needed. Just a little holiday cheer! I will say a little prayer for you that you fall pregnant soon!

    #58433
    Laurie
    Participant

    BigRed,

    Congratulations!! I think Jenni and Catherine are great examples of being diagnosed with melanoma while pregnant and surviving (and thriving)!

    I think everyone here would agree that your worry is very normal and expected. Catherine is right with her advice about relaxing, etc. You are monitored and that’s the best. Remember we are all here for you and we do understand the feelings, the worry, etc.

    My best wishes to you, your new baby to come and the rest of your family; you all deserve it!! Laurie

    #58434
    toastwave
    Participant

    Hi BigRed,

    Just chiming in to say I know how you feel. My daughter was 10mo when I was diagnosed with a severe/borderline early melanoma lesion (dermpaths couldn’t agree but, regardless, it was very thin- .15mm!). At the time we thought we would NEVER try for a second because we were so scared. Also, the lesion appeared about 2 months after giving birth so it made us think there could be a correlation…I know, I know, no studies show there is a correlation but one still gets freaked out.

    Anyway, time passed, we didn’t want our daughter to be an only child, so we decided to go for it. I am still pretty closely watched (every 3 months because of my sunburn history and because I make atypical moles). We got lucky and I am 4 months along with the second now. The week we found out we were pregnant, we also found out that one of my biopsies had been severely atypical. I had a WLE done with the only significant difference being no epinephrine in the anesthetic combo, which led to some gnarly bruising but no more pain or anything compared to the previous re-excisions. I am still going in every three months and just realized last week during my monthly check that I have 3 changin moles. Ugh. One is raised and has a black dot in it (it is otherwise brown). One is brand new and dark like my original lesion. And one has some new speckling. It is also hard to tell because all are getting darker as is my skin in places due to the hormones.

    I am trying to just take it in stride and think that if it is something, we will probably catch it early because we are super vigilant. It sucks. I completely know how you feel. I just keep looking at my older daughter, who is now 2.5 and thinking how the extra paranoia will totaly be worth it because kids really are awesome. And exhausting. And awesome :).

    Hang in there and good luck! I am sure your derm will see you more frequently if you feel that they need to do so for peace of mind. Mine offered this during pregnancy.

    Good luck with the babe!

    #58435
    BigRed1984
    Participant

    Toastwave, thank you for your reply. I hope we can stay in touch. It will be nice to have someone to co-miserate with during this scary pregnancy time. It is difficult for me emotionally as I am sure it is for you. I have other friends who are pregnant and care free, while I am happy for them I am also totally jealous.

    I have yet to get a skin check while pregnant, I am looking forward to it though. I am pretty sure I have a BCC on my cheek. 🙄 I has been growing for a few months and looks like a cresent moon with some tiny blood vessels in it. It is small but it screams at me. I hope it is nothing. I will just have to wait and see. I hope your moles turn out benign. Please keep me posted. I am not as far along as you only about 6-7 weeks. I can’t wait to start showing and feeling the baby. Kids are so worth it. Lots of work, but worth it. My daughter is about 27 months so they will be about three years apart. Like you we were super freaked out after the diagnosis and thought we should just be done. We changed our minds. But I do think this will be our last. Best of luck!

    #58436
    Lisa P
    Participant

    Hi, Big Red! Just to ease your mind, perhaps you shouldn’t wait to get the spot on your face checked out. I can’t stand the anxiety of wondering whether there’s a problem or not. Just my two cents’ worth! Hope you’re doing well and keep us posted, Lisa

    #58437
    Worrywart
    Participant

    Congrats on your pregnancy!!!

    Try not to worry, I’m sure you’ll be fine. I have a friend who is a breast cancer survivor and decided to get pregnant…and breast cancer is proven to be linked to cancer. Melanoma does not even have a proven link, so just keep that in mind. Remain vigilant, but not paranoid. Enjoy your pregnancy!

    #58438
    cohanja
    Participant

    Olympic gymnast Shannon Miller is pregnant again despite a battle with ovarian cancer

    #58439
    BigRed1984
    Participant

    Thanks for your reassuring replies. I did not know Shannon miller had a bout with ovarian cancer. An acquaintance from high school passed away from ovarian cancer this past week. I pray for the young woman who is pregnant after breast cancer and for shannon miller, and myself! I am out of town visiting family but I have a prenatal appointment on the first. I will have them refer me to a new dermatologist. We just moved 2 months ago and I have yet to get things settled. I am in denial about the spot on my cheek. It’s small but it doesn’t look right. certainly not a zit or new mole. I thought I would only have to worry about more melanomas. But I guess if you get one you are at risk for another type. Has anyone else had a basal cell?

    #58440
    Worrywart
    Participant

    The spot on your cheek could be an AK. Is it red and flaky? I’ve had several of those. My derm just freezes them off.

    As for my friend…she already had her baby, and the baby is 7 mos old and they are all doing great!

    I know it’s scary having a hs classmate die of cancer. I had a good friend from hs die of melanoma when he was 37. He and I were dx at the same time and he had a clean SNB and then his came back and he passed away a year ago. That was hard for me. I had some anxiety afterwards.

    #58441
    BigRed1984
    Participant

    worrywart, I am sorry to hear about your classmate. That must have been very difficult esp with your diagnosis coming at the same time. My classmate was 28 with three little kids, ovarian cancer. Life is scary!

    Pretty sure the spot on my cheek isn’t an ak. It looks just like the basals my uncle gets all frequently but a little smaller. Like a bump that is paler than my skin with a teenie tiny blood vessel in it. My uncle is 70 though, and I am 28. I must have really ruined my skin. Sigh….

    #58442
    Worrywart
    Participant

    Did you get your cheek lesion checked out yet? I hope your pregnancy is going well!

    :P

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