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Sun Exposure - Melanoma

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Guest Animal

I've been thinking a but, as I do.....

 

I get a fair bit of sun, as I'm sure we all do. I've had a few "sun spots" for want of a better term burnt off.

 

I've been surfing since I was in primary school, then add in triathlon as well I see quite a bit of sun. I'm pretty smart about it. I often wear a kooky surf hat if surfing small waves, suncream etc. If I'm not surfing I don't go to beach in middle of day, leave it to late in afternoon. Never sunbake (yeah I've got the daggy tan lines)

 

BUT, here is my question

 

How many of you know a surfer or triathlete or general fit and healthy outdoors type person who has had melanoma?

 

I can honestly say out of all my surfing contacts, all my surf lifesaving contacts and all my triathlon contacts I've never known a single case of Melanoma.

 

I do know and know of people who have died of Melanoma, but none were healthy, nor did they really see a lot of sun.

 

Do you think there is more to the equation than sun exposure? (of course there is, but just how much)?

 

A few theories I've heard on ABC radio (yeah yeah I'm a dork) over the years related to this

1) Melanoma develops in "old cells" or "rancid" fat deposits underneath the skin in people with less than ideal health

2) When wearing sunglasses it protects they eyes but the eyes also don't recieve the requierd information to send signal to body to release protectants (melanin??)

3) Diet is a risk factor...

 

I know I could do some research into it, but Transitions if full of experts on everything so just let you folks do all the hard work. I'm just curious as to exactly how much at risk I am.

 

(Yes, I got really burnt surfing yesterday which is why I'm thinking of it!)

 

Sandbox if you like, but I think it's triathlon related due to the amount of sun we get and what precautions we should/could take!

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Sometimes sun has nothing to do with it either. Girl at work (<30yo with an 18mth old) found one where you would normally expect a saddle sore. No nude sunbaking. Lymph nodes gone and on her last available treatment. Shit disease. Can't help with your questions though.

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my dad has skin cancers including melonoma. He was in the air force and spent many, many hours outdoors. OHS for this sort of thing only came in during the mid to late 90's. He doesn't have much of his nose or ears left and had to have extensive dental work due to the risk of radionecrosis. The treatment has had huge impact on him as the surgery for a parotid tumour severed facial nerves.

 

I used to be a radiation therapist and have treated buckets of melanomas in people of all ages an most of them were healthy. That's if they are lucky. Often they come in with brain and chest mets of unknown primary. Which often turns out to be melanoma. They often look healthy too to begin with.

 

I don't really think there is more to the equation than sun exposure. It is still the biggest risk factor. Sure there are variables but at the end decrease sun exposure, decrease all skin cancer risk.

Edited by Ruby

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Guest Animal

See where the confusion is though Ruby, the post above yours mentioned a site that never saw any sun?

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I am not quite sure the relevance n=1?. People who don't smoke also get lung cancer. That doesn't invalidate a causal relationship between sun exposure and melanoma, smoking and lung cancer, mesothelioma and blue asbestos exposure.

 

IMHO the aetiology of melanoma is sun exposure. This doesn't mean that you can't get it, but that your risk is decreased, dramatically.

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Guest Animal

Ok, but with lung cancer, they have pinpointed the increase in risk with amounts of smoking, type of smoking, duration of having the habit etc....

 

They either aren't pushing the same evidence forward for skin cancer or it doesn't exist.

 

Is there a "7 hours a week of sun exporure increases you risk by x amount" "14 hours increases your risk by xy amount" etc

 

Just curious, not disagreeing with you. I'm not an expert in this area.

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The thought with skin cancer is that it can result from a single sun exposure (there advertising to this effect btw). It isn't necessarily thought to an accumulaton effect thing like smoking. So there is no advocating of a safe level of sun exposure. The more you exposure your skin to sun (without suncreen) you increase your risk. Even with smoking the risks are not linear, but it is an easy way to communicate the consequences.

 

The science with smoking isn't that precise but the thinking is that its never too late to quit and by doing so reducing your risk. People who quit smoking still make up lung cancer numbers, but at least you stop increasing it!

 

Then there is the real reason to avoid the sun. Resembling a hermes handbag.

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In answer to the original question, my partner is a surfer and had a melanoma. He was very fit & otherwise healthy at the time.

Edited by -H-

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Hey .. I was actually thinking about this yesterday when I came back from the Cole Classic.

As I arrived late I didn't have the time to put sun screen before and I ended with a nice sun burn from the neck to the ankle.

 

It's my bad .. .I should have spent less time on the race :D

 

Nothing really to add to what has been said. I'm just a little bit cautious with your "without sunscreen" which sounds like an advertising from Sunscreen company. Not sure that just putting some sunscreen will remove all the risk . I mean unless you put on your body a 2mm thick layer of sunscreen of course...

Edited by nicoloco

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It is hard to generalise about it, but the thing about most cancers is that they result from an accumulation of DNA mutations over your life - not usually from a single incident.

 

Usually a cancer will involve a collection of different mutations - one will make the cancerous cells invisible to your immune system, another will make the cells grow out of normal control, another will stop the cells dying past a certain number of divisions, another will increase blood supply to those cells, another will turn off other pathways that would otherwise kill abnormal cells etc etc.

 

The mutations occur randomly - more sun damage, more free radicals etc just increase the probability that you eventually get another one. But it is all probabilities - everyone will know someone who smoked like a chimney and never got lung cancer, but when you count enough people, patterns emerge (btw there are a whole class of lung cancers that are not smoking-related as well as those that are).

 

Most of us reading this probably already have a few of these mutations already, most caused by environmental effects but some will have inherited relevant mutations from their parents, which just means they increase their chances of developing cancer a bit sooner.

 

Any single day in the sun might only result in a small increase in the probability of lasting DNA damage, but it is an increase nevertheless. I don't know how fitness might affect all this, but I think it would have it pluses and minuses (e.g. maybe a better diet but more time in hte sun).

Edited by stu

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I've been thinking a but, as I do.....

 

I get a fair bit of sun, as I'm sure we all do. I've had a few "sun spots" for want of a better term burnt off.

 

I've been surfing since I was in primary school, then add in triathlon as well I see quite a bit of sun. I'm pretty smart about it. I often wear a kooky surf hat if surfing small waves, suncream etc. If I'm not surfing I don't go to beach in middle of day, leave it to late in afternoon. Never sunbake (yeah I've got the daggy tan lines)

 

 

Sandbox if you like, but I think it's triathlon related due to the amount of sun we get and what precautions we should/could take!

 

 

 

 

I had a melanoma removed from my back in May last year. Fortunately it was caught early and just required two proceedures to remove the area plus some extra they remove for insurance. I was lucky I had it checked before it went past stage one. I won't go into the different stages here but worth looking at.

 

I am 48 (well will be in 2 weeks anyway) I surfed from about 10 years old to mid 30's. Took up triathlon when I was about 35. I have always been careful in the sun (dad was redhead and mum scottish so had skin easily burnt!).

 

Anyway from what I know of it getting sunburnt will dramatically increase your risk of melanoma. I am make sure I sunscreen up before and during races as well as training sessions. Also anytime I will be outdoors for anything over 20 mins the sunscreen goes on!

 

But the main thing I learnt from my experience is if you have any doubt about any moles/marks on your body have them checked. Both the doctor and the dermatologist I saw thought my mole was nothing to worry about but decided to check it just in case.

 

Thankfully they did or it could have got a lot worse very quickly.

 

Cheers

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There's 3 people at work who've had melanoma - all in relatively good shape without being 'fitness fanatics'. Two of them have had it on more than one occasion. They are all fair skinned. One is a sun lover, one a bowls player and the other a careful mum who is always pale.

 

I have had a fair bit of exposure (surfing, cricket, golf, triathlon) but am olive skinned and have very rarely burnt. Was checked last year by the Melanoma clinic as a precaution and they just suggested I try to avoid sun contact. I try and cover up but suspect I'll end up like my mother and have lots of little things frozen off as I get older.

 

Melanoma's a roll of the dice and I have little doubt sun exposure increases your risk.

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I'm booked in for Monday to have a Basal Cell Carcenoma removed. It's near the top of my head. I don't have heaps of Fabio type hair but am certainly not bald, so it's not an area on me of high exposure.

 

The plastic surgeon said the reason for it is:

 

1. Over 30

2. Caucasian skin

3. In Australia

 

If it is Melanoma (20% chance he said) I will need a second more aggressive operation to take out more of it.

 

 

Not excited about this. A 10-20 cent chunk of my head has to be removed and the scalp stretched.

 

I've never been a deliberate sunbaker and usually always use sunscreen particularly on the face and neck so this does come as a surprise.

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Wife's story.

Very healthy, trained, ate well (not like me),no caffeine, no alcohol, no nothing. Very ,very careful in the sun. Always covered from head to toe in either clothes or sun screen.Usually both.

Always wore a hat, etc, etc ,etc

 

Had a mole removed from her lower back 6 years ago that was not melona was told cells were "turning" (whatever that means).

Found small lump on left hip/groin (bascially above hip bone) 2 weeks before her 40th birthday (August 2010). Turned out to be the lymph node with the largest tumor of metastatic melanoma. Was cut open from navel to mid thigh on her left side. Had 21 lymph nodes removed, 2 had signs of the cancer.

 

Had surgery twice. Once as above, 2nd time to remove another tumor that formed almost immediately and was removed a January 2011.

 

Surgeon (also a triathlete...small world!) told her point blank that only only reason she is here today is that she was fit and healthy to begin with and if she had been as fat (wife had a 6 pack) as most of the patients she normally treats, it would have been too late for her as she never would have felt the lump she had weeks to live.

 

Melanoma's a roll of the dice and I have little doubt sun exposure increases your risk.

 

 

According to the surgeon, while sun exposure is a risk factor, its not as big a factor as previously thought.

Basically, if you are pre-disposed to get it, you will.

 

But, moral of the story is dont give up no matter what. She was always positive no matter what. Stage III and she is here to tell the story. Not many people come back from stage III...

 

Mrs is entered in the enticer at Husky. First race back. When you guys see me crying like a girl before the sprint, you will know its not because Im scared of getting beat by Roxii :lol:

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Melanoma is one type of skin cancer as far as I know and probably the most dangerous I know however of 3 people who have had Basal Cell Carcinomas removed in one of then 2 times already. Basal Cell carcinoma is less aggressive but nevertheless a skin cancer.

 

Fair skinned/ AUstralian sun/ lots of time out doors = skin cancer risk increase

 

Always amazes me when I go down to bondi a hot clear day you can count the umbrellas and sun shelters on the beach on one hand!!!! and all those baking in the sun are fair skinned people???

 

Go to a beach in North africa where people are waaaay darker than here and you could not even see the sand from the number of umbrellas ............. go figure

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Wife's story.

Very healthy, trained, ate well (not like me),no caffeine, no alcohol, no nothing. Very ,very careful in the sun. Always covered from head to toe in either clothes or sun screen.Usually both.

Always wore a hat, etc, etc ,etc

 

Had a mole removed from her lower back 6 years ago that was not melona was told cells were "turning" (whatever that means).

Found small lump on left hip/groin (bascially above hip bone) 2 weeks before her 40th birthday (August 2010). Turned out to be the lymph node with the largest tumor of metastatic melanoma. Was cut open from navel to mid thigh on her left side. Had 21 lymph nodes removed, 2 had signs of the cancer.

 

Had surgery twice. Once as above, 2nd time to remove another tumor that formed almost immediately and was removed a January 2011.

 

Surgeon (also a triathlete...small world!) told her point blank that only only reason she is here today is that she was fit and healthy to begin with and if she had been as fat (wife had a 6 pack) as most of the patients she normally treats, it would have been too late for her as she never would have felt the lump she had weeks to live.

 

 

 

According to the surgeon, while sun exposure is a risk factor, its not as big a factor as previously thought.

Basically, if you are pre-disposed to get it, you will.

 

But, moral of the story is dont give up no matter what. She was always positive no matter what. Stage III and she is here to tell the story. Not many people come back from stage III...

 

Mrs is entered in the enticer at Husky. First race back. When you guys see me crying like a girl before the sprint, you will know its not because Im scared of getting beat by Roxii :lol:

 

 

Wow

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I tell that story to anyone and everyone, just so they realise that melanoma does not discriminate and sun exposure is any one of the risk factors, not the only risk factor.

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Hey Tinny, Im worried about getting beaten by your Mrs.

 

She can overcome cancer and put up with you, she is one tough chick!

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Guest Animal

Melanoma is one type of skin cancer as far as I know and probably the most dangerous I know however of 3 people who have had Basal Cell Carcinomas removed in one of then 2 times already. Basal Cell carcinoma is less aggressive but nevertheless a skin cancer.

 

Fair skinned/ AUstralian sun/ lots of time out doors = skin cancer risk increase

 

Always amazes me when I go down to bondi a hot clear day you can count the umbrellas and sun shelters on the beach on one hand!!!! and all those baking in the sun are fair skinned people???

 

Go to a beach in North africa where people are waaaay darker than here and you could not even see the sand from the number of umbrellas ............. go figure

 

 

Intentional sun bathing amazes me too. I guess it's like riding without a helmet.

 

I can't see any good in it.

 

I do my best to avoid sun, but like all of us, much of what I love doing is outdoors and so I try and cover up as much as possible.

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Hey Tinny, Im worried about getting beaten by your Mrs.

 

She can overcome cancer and put up with you, she is one tough chick!

 

:lol:

Well lucky for you she is only doing the enticer....or is that what youre doing now to? :blink:

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But, moral of the story is dont give up no matter what. She was always positive no matter what. Stage III and she is here to tell the story. Not many people come back from stage III...

 

Mrs is entered in the enticer at Husky. First race back. When you guys see me crying like a girl before the sprint, you will know its not because Im scared of getting beat by Roxii :lol:

 

 

WOW Stage III and a survivor. I read quite a bit after my melanoma and it all basically agreed stage III is a death sentence.

 

Hope she has a great comeback race, will be up there for LC let us know her number will have an extra cheer for her :)

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It is hard to generalise about it, but the thing about most cancers is that they result from an accumulation of DNA mutations over your life - not usually from a single incident.

 

Usually a cancer will involve a collection of different mutations - one will make the cancerous cells invisible to your immune system, another will make the cells grow out of normal control, another will stop the cells dying past a certain number of divisions, another will increase blood supply to those cells, another will turn off other pathways that would otherwise kill abnormal cells etc etc.

 

The mutations occur randomly - more sun damage, more free radicals etc just increase the probability that you eventually get another one. But it is all probabilities - everyone will know someone who smoked like a chimney and never got lung cancer, but when you count enough people, patterns emerge (btw there are a whole class of lung cancers that are not smoking-related as well as those that are).

 

Most of us reading this probably already have a few of these mutations already, most caused by environmental effects but some will have inherited relevant mutations from their parents, which just means they increase their chances of developing cancer a bit sooner.

 

Any single day in the sun might only result in a small increase in the probability of lasting DNA damage, but it is an increase nevertheless. I don't know how fitness might affect all this, but I think it would have it pluses and minuses (e.g. maybe a better diet but more time in hte sun).

 

 

Stu has pretty much nailed it. I would liken it to train surfing or something like that. You get away with it most of the time, then one day, you don't. Obviously the more you train surf (or smoke, or tan) the more likely it is you lose.

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WOW Stage III and a survivor. I read quite a bit after my melanoma and it all basically agreed stage III is a death sentence.

 

Hope she has a great comeback race, will be up there for LC let us know her number will have an extra cheer for her :)

 

Will do. Im sure she would love the extra cheering.

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Mrs is entered in the enticer at Husky. First race back. When you guys see me crying like a girl before the sprint, you will know its not because Im scared of getting beat by Roxii :lol:

 

 

Goosebumps and choked up myself here Tinman! For all your stories of putting crap on each other, it's obvious you both adore each other. Hope Mrs Tinman has a great day :)

 

Me personally - I'm turning into a horror film with the amount of scars I'm gathering on my face from BCC removals! :(

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There has been some criticism internationally of the Slip Slop Slap campaign and Australia's obession with sun screen. Interesting now a bit of a back flip - from Wiiki

 

"Since this campaign was introduced along with advertisements and a jingle, the incidence of the two most common forms of skin cancer (basal-cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma) in Australia has decreased. However, the incidence of melanoma - the most lethal form of skin cancer - has increased."

 

and interestingly,

 

"The sun's UV radiation is both a major cause of skin cancer and the best natural source of vitamin D. The risk of skin cancer from too much sun exposure needs to be balanced with maintaining adequate vitamin D levels. Vitamin D deficiency has also greatly increased, since sunblock also prevents vitamin D production in the skin"

 

 

There is also some general talk (which I can't be bothered finding right now) that says something like without the vitamin D you are at greater risk of cancer in other areas of the body - and some say this far outweighs the benefits of NOT getting sun.

 

and from Wiki

 

"Doctors recommend spending small amounts of time in the sun without sun protection when the UV index is below three to ensure adequate production of vitamin D.[9] Sun exposure to help with vitamin D is recommended when UV levels are below three"

 

 

The one thing I do know about melanoma is a time bomb with a short fuse (days count, not weeks or months). Get it checked and get it removed ASAP. Once it breaks through the skin layer (about 2mm, i think) into your body, you are completely f*cked.

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Over the last 12 months all these sun spots have started to appear on my back and shoulders which is starting to concern me. They are little white spots for anyone not sure what I mean. A skin person came to my work last year and said to get my GP to have a look and the GP said at this stage they are not a problem.

 

But they seem to be getting worse so I think another trip to my GP is in order or a skin specialist over the next few weeks. My parents were pretty good with sunscreen with us as kids but as a teenager we use to sunbake quite a bit to look brown = cool back then.

 

I am pretty good with covering up and applying sunscreen but don't really do it in the morning with swims finishing at 7 or 8am. But probably need to start applying it for swims as well or start wearing a sun shirt.

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Even having your GP check your skin is no guarantee a problem will be detected. I can recall a couple of GPs who told me "no, that should not be a problem'. As I noticed the spot getting itchier and larger each time, I had to ask for a biopsy to be done before a skin cancer was detected and the spot subsequently removed.

 

Ultimately, you are the one responsible for your own destiny.

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Even having your GP check your skin is no guarantee a problem will be detected. I can recall a couple of GPs who told me "no, that should not be a problem'. As I noticed the spot getting itchier and larger each time, I had to ask for a biopsy to be done before a skin cancer was detected and the spot subsequently removed.

 

Ultimately, you are the one responsible for your own destiny.

 

 

Yep if in doubt have it checked. Mine had chaged colour slightly and gotten a little larger but not itchy.

 

My GP said he didn't think it was an issue but he at least referred me to a dermatologist. Even the dermatologist said he thought it was nothing to worry about but he would rather take it out and have a biopsy done. He rang me and said he was very surprised that the mole turned out to be a melanoma, but as previously stated caught early.

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An elder sister of one of my daughters friends went to the Doctors in early December days after her engagement party. As she was feeling constantly tired. Doctor thought Iron deficiency and sent her for blood test, then a liver ultrasound. My wife performed the ultrasound and the results were not good, showing secondaries in her liver. The primary was traced to a previously removed Melanoma under her hair line (Reported at the time as benign).

 

She was buried at East Maitland this morning aged 22.

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Over the last 12 months all these sun spots have started to appear on my back and shoulders which is starting to concern me. They are little white spots for anyone not sure what I mean. A skin person came to my work last year and said to get my GP to have a look and the GP said at this stage they are not a problem.

 

But they seem to be getting worse so I think another trip to my GP is in order or a skin specialist over the next few weeks. My parents were pretty good with sunscreen with us as kids but as a teenager we use to sunbake quite a bit to look brown = cool back then.

 

I am pretty good with covering up and applying sunscreen but don't really do it in the morning with swims finishing at 7 or 8am. But probably need to start applying it for swims as well or start wearing a sun shirt.

 

I've had a white spot like that appear a few months ago on my back, at the end of spring I developed a very light tan on my back swimming outdoors and the white spot seemed to appear then. I generally use sunscreen whenever I go outside for more than 20 minutes. It's a pain trying to make sure the whole back is covered when going swimming though. I think there is a valid argument to gradual exposure to let your body protect itself the way it's meant to, I haven't done this based on the theory that it can't hurt to use the sunscreen so why take the chance, but the Vitamin argument throws that into question too.

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There is also some general talk (which I can't be bothered finding right now) that says something like without the vitamin D you are at greater risk of cancer in other areas of the body - and some say this far outweighs the benefits of NOT getting sun.

 

 

 

There's a lot to be learned about this problem over the next few years - a lot of what they learn will turn popular beliefs on their heads :shy:

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Even having your GP check your skin is no guarantee a problem will be detected. I can recall a couple of GPs who told me "no, that should not be a problem'. As I noticed the spot getting itchier and larger each time, I had to ask for a biopsy to be done before a skin cancer was detected and the spot subsequently removed.

 

Ultimately, you are the one responsible for your own destiny.

 

Exactly.

I told the Mrs about a mole turning on her lower back, told her to see her GP and not leave until it was removed and sent for pathology because I could see it changing shape from week to week.

 

Dr told her he was 100% sure it was nothing and to go home. Only when she insisted did he re-schedule another appointment that afternoon to remove it.

Doesnt look good for him re-reading his clinical notes which state its 100% benign but will remove at patients request :blink:

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Important thread, here is my story:

 

Have had three melanoma removed: one on my chest (10 years ago), and from my left thigh and right foot (both three years ago). And big chunks of surrounding skin and tissue. All of them where at first thought to be "nothing" by GPs and dermatologists. But I insisted on them being removed and then they all came back as positive. Also had three rounds of sentinel lymph node biopsies. Three years ago two LNs in my right groin came back as positive to be micrometastasized from the melanoma on the top of my foot. So this made it to be Stage III. Very bad news when you read the survival rates: 60/40.

 

After seeing a specialist at the Melanoma Clinic at the PA Hospital in Brisbane, I was given 3 options:

 

1. Do nothing.

2. Have a complete lymph node dissection of the groin. This would probably most likely having Lymphoedema (localized fluid

retention and tissue swelling caused by a compromised lymphatic system) in my right leg and the end of any competitive sports or

active life.

3. Monitor the situation with an ultrasound every 4 months (for 5 years) to see if the lymph nodes are changing. Plus yearly CT

scans.

 

After much agonizing and discussion with family and friends, I went with option 3 as there is a 80% chance of having no further infection compared to the very real possibility of living with Lymphoedema. Lymphoedema is nasty; my mum had a block dissection after a secondary in her groin from colon cancer. She now has a badly swollen leg and has to wear compress stockings and needs massage to manage it. Cancer runs in my family.

 

The specialist told me that my chances of survival are far better than average due to being so fit and active. And any swelling of my lymph nodes will be easy to feel as I am lean and not fat like your average bloke. Have always lived an outdoor life, being a surfer and triathlete for most. Always used sunscreen and wore rash vests while surfing, but I think the damage was done when I was a kid and way before the “Slip, Slop,. Slap” thing happened. Am male and 51 and am still setting PBs and making podiums in races. Actually won the 50’s AG of a duathlon last Sunday. Live in Tokyo and race mainly in Japan and Asia. Last year I was on the Japanese team at the Worlds in Beijing. Have done Kona and the 70.3 Worlds. I state all this to show that even all this has not held me back from training and racing. And living!

 

So my recommendations are:

1. Get any suspect moles or spots checked out ASAP.
2. Keep pushing your doctors if they are unsure. I was told that my first one was just a “liver spot”. And the other two nothing
even though your chances of having more melanoma increase greatly after the initial diagnosis.
3. Always get second or even third opinions if given a bad diagnosis.
4. Do tons of research! I was the one who found option 3 in a melanoma research document on the internet. My specialist
was aware, but recommended option 2 at first which is the standard.
5. I have “olive” skin and tan very easily and have been told that I am not usually the type to get melanoma. But obviously
this was wrong in my case. So all skins types have risk.
6. Stay positive! But easier said than done.

 

 

Since my second diagnosis three years ago, there have been a couple of dramas with false positive tests, but they all worked out for the best in the end. I still have check ups every 4 months and will have my yearly CT scans next month.

 

Keren

Edited by astroman

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Don't know what this will add, except maybe trust your gut and keep searching until you are satisfied things make sense. Don't trust Drs who don;t install you with confidence.

 

6 years ago my Dad retired from work. He came home from holidays with a rash on his leg, didn't go away so his GP ordered a biopsy. Came back as an invasive aggressive SCC. Referred to a plastic surgeon the next day who disbelieved the first path report, re-ordered more which were reported as an inflammatory rash Told to go home as he didn't have skin cancer. My Dad is a super-logical bloke with pure-maths and computer science background and couldn't get his head around the different opinions. Doesn't question Drs so home he went.

 

6 months later he gets unwell and has a lump in groin. Lymph node shows secondary SCC, it had now spread to aortic lymph nodes. The country hospital surgeon says" I have an oncologist who visits once a month, wait til then and we'll see what he says" Bullshit says I, called in a favour with a school contact and got him in that day with an oncologist at RPA. Surgery 2 days later with the guy on the melanoma ads. I made a passing comment about Chris O'Brien on here and Kerbside corresponded with me via PM and then had the generosity of spirit to ring me and offer me support while she was fighting a losing battle with brain cancer. Unbelievable person.

 

5 years later and he has had countless bouts of radiotherapy for the mets he has in his thigh, pelvis, back and neck. He can't have any more as his bone is too weak. He has taken oral chemo full time for at least 3 years. He has paraneoplastic syndrome which thickens his blood so he has had numerous strokes and heart attacks requiring hospital stays and daily clexane injections plus oral anti-coagulants and the accompanying functional deficits these events produce. can't drive at all or write well, limited concentration span. He has lymphoedema in his entire body from the armpits down. He is now into his 4th week as an inpatient in the oncology ward at RPA due to "active disease" causing high calcium levels and severe bone pain. He is on some strong narcotics. He has shingles, a UTI, catheter, delirium, and a good day means he can get to the toilet with assistance of 2 others. He is on his 2nd dose of IV chemo in 3 weeks and his specialist is hopeful after the third cycle he will be able to go to rehab and return home. We have just had all his pathology slides and tissue blocks sent to a specialist pathologist in the USA for opinion and confirmation of the exact type of cancer he is battling.

 

Why take the risk of behaviour that increases your risk of getting a disease that can kill you? Skin cancer kills more Australians than Vitamin D deficiency.

 

The above may explain my tetchiness with Gimili and his McGrath crap/moderator baiting and my de-friending people with fake cancer on Facebook. Life is too short for negative energy.

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Fair skin, blue eyes, dark hair = highest combo of skin cancer in the Aussie sun.

 

I've had a number of basal cell and squamous cell carcinomas cut out/treated.The last one was 2010. I've also had a malignant melonoma taken from my back, 60 stitches and lymph nodes removed. The melonoma was 2.5mm deep - that's the depth most people don't come back from.That was 1989. The Professor who operated told me he has lost many a patient that was much smaller that mine. The big fella upstairs must have been watching over me. Now my back is is always referred to from my family as "the shark bite".

 

Go get them checked. It doesn't cost much, if anything. Cover up, train early or late, wear a cap running...... and don't forget your ears.

 

FM

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Don't know what this will add, except maybe trust your gut and keep searching until you are satisfied things make sense. Don't trust Drs who don;t install you with confidence.

 

6 years ago my Dad retired from work. He came home from holidays with a rash on his leg, didn't go away so his GP ordered a biopsy. Came back as an invasive aggressive SCC. Referred to a plastic surgeon the next day who disbelieved the first path report, re-ordered more which were reported as an inflammatory rash Told to go home as he didn't have skin cancer. My Dad is a super-logical bloke with pure-maths and computer science background and couldn't get his head around the different opinions. Doesn't question Drs so home he went.

 

6 months later he gets unwell and has a lump in groin. Lymph node shows secondary SCC, it had now spread to aortic lymph nodes. The country hospital surgeon says" I have an oncologist who visits once a month, wait til then and we'll see what he says" Bullshit says I, called in a favour with a school contact and got him in that day with an oncologist at RPA. Surgery 2 days later with the guy on the melanoma ads. I made a passing comment about Chris O'Brien on here and Kerbside corresponded with me via PM and then had the generosity of spirit to ring me and offer me support while she was fighting a losing battle with brain cancer. Unbelievable person.

 

5 years later and he has had countless bouts of radiotherapy for the mets he has in his thigh, pelvis, back and neck. He can't have any more as his bone is too weak. He has taken oral chemo full time for at least 3 years. He has paraneoplastic syndrome which thickens his blood so he has had numerous strokes and heart attacks requiring hospital stays and daily clexane injections plus oral anti-coagulants and the accompanying functional deficits these events produce. can't drive at all or write well, limited concentration span. He has lymphoedema in his entire body from the armpits down. He is now into his 4th week as an inpatient in the oncology ward at RPA due to "active disease" causing high calcium levels and severe bone pain. He is on some strong narcotics. He has shingles, a UTI, catheter, delirium, and a good day means he can get to the toilet with assistance of 2 others. He is on his 2nd dose of IV chemo in 3 weeks and his specialist is hopeful after the third cycle he will be able to go to rehab and return home. We have just had all his pathology slides and tissue blocks sent to a specialist pathologist in the USA for opinion and confirmation of the exact type of cancer he is battling.

 

Why take the risk of behaviour that increases your risk of getting a disease that can kill you? Skin cancer kills more Australians than Vitamin D deficiency.

 

The above may explain my tetchiness with Gimili and his McGrath crap/moderator baiting and my de-friending people with fake cancer on Facebook. Life is too short for negative energy.

 

 

Don't know what this will add, except maybe trust your gut and keep searching until you are satisfied things make sense. Don't trust Drs who don;t install you with confidence.

 

6 years ago my Dad retired from work. He came home from holidays with a rash on his leg, didn't go away so his GP ordered a biopsy. Came back as an invasive aggressive SCC. Referred to a plastic surgeon the next day who disbelieved the first path report, re-ordered more which were reported as an inflammatory rash Told to go home as he didn't have skin cancer. My Dad is a super-logical bloke with pure-maths and computer science background and couldn't get his head around the different opinions. Doesn't question Drs so home he went.

 

6 months later he gets unwell and has a lump in groin. Lymph node shows secondary SCC, it had now spread to aortic lymph nodes. The country hospital surgeon says" I have an oncologist who visits once a month, wait til then and we'll see what he says" Bullshit says I, called in a favour with a school contact and got him in that day with an oncologist at RPA. Surgery 2 days later with the guy on the melanoma ads. I made a passing comment about Chris O'Brien on here and Kerbside corresponded with me via PM and then had the generosity of spirit to ring me and offer me support while she was fighting a losing battle with brain cancer. Unbelievable person.

 

5 years later and he has had countless bouts of radiotherapy for the mets he has in his thigh, pelvis, back and neck. He can't have any more as his bone is too weak. He has taken oral chemo full time for at least 3 years. He has paraneoplastic syndrome which thickens his blood so he has had numerous strokes and heart attacks requiring hospital stays and daily clexane injections plus oral anti-coagulants and the accompanying functional deficits these events produce. can't drive at all or write well, limited concentration span. He has lymphoedema in his entire body from the armpits down. He is now into his 4th week as an inpatient in the oncology ward at RPA due to "active disease" causing high calcium levels and severe bone pain. He is on some strong narcotics. He has shingles, a UTI, catheter, delirium, and a good day means he can get to the toilet with assistance of 2 others. He is on his 2nd dose of IV chemo in 3 weeks and his specialist is hopeful after the third cycle he will be able to go to rehab and return home. We have just had all his pathology slides and tissue blocks sent to a specialist pathologist in the USA for opinion and confirmation of the exact type of cancer he is battling.

 

Why take the risk of behaviour that increases your risk of getting a disease that can kill you? Skin cancer kills more Australians than Vitamin D deficiency.

 

The above may explain my tetchiness with Gimili and his McGrath crap/moderator baiting and my de-friending people with fake cancer on Facebook. Life is too short for negative energy.

 

 

Don't know what this will add, except maybe trust your gut and keep searching until you are satisfied things make sense. Don't trust Drs who don;t install you with confidence.

 

6 years ago my Dad retired from work. He came home from holidays with a rash on his leg, didn't go away so his GP ordered a biopsy. Came back as an invasive aggressive SCC. Referred to a plastic surgeon the next day who disbelieved the first path report, re-ordered more which were reported as an inflammatory rash Told to go home as he didn't have skin cancer. My Dad is a super-logical bloke with pure-maths and computer science background and couldn't get his head around the different opinions. Doesn't question Drs so home he went.

 

6 months later he gets unwell and has a lump in groin. Lymph node shows secondary SCC, it had now spread to aortic lymph nodes. The country hospital surgeon says" I have an oncologist who visits once a month, wait til then and we'll see what he says" Bullshit says I, called in a favour with a school contact and got him in that day with an oncologist at RPA. Surgery 2 days later with the guy on the melanoma ads. I made a passing comment about Chris O'Brien on here and Kerbside corresponded with me via PM and then had the generosity of spirit to ring me and offer me support while she was fighting a losing battle with brain cancer. Unbelievable person.

 

5 years later and he has had countless bouts of radiotherapy for the mets he has in his thigh, pelvis, back and neck. He can't have any more as his bone is too weak. He has taken oral chemo full time for at least 3 years. He has paraneoplastic syndrome which thickens his blood so he has had numerous strokes and heart attacks requiring hospital stays and daily clexane injections plus oral anti-coagulants and the accompanying functional deficits these events produce. can't drive at all or write well, limited concentration span. He has lymphoedema in his entire body from the armpits down. He is now into his 4th week as an inpatient in the oncology ward at RPA due to "active disease" causing high calcium levels and severe bone pain. He is on some strong narcotics. He has shingles, a UTI, catheter, delirium, and a good day means he can get to the toilet with assistance of 2 others. He is on his 2nd dose of IV chemo in 3 weeks and his specialist is hopeful after the third cycle he will be able to go to rehab and return home. We have just had all his pathology slides and tissue blocks sent to a specialist pathologist in the USA for opinion and confirmation of the exact type of cancer he is battling.

 

Why take the risk of behaviour that increases your risk of getting a disease that can kill you? Skin cancer kills more Australians than Vitamin D deficiency.

 

The above may explain my tetchiness with Gimili and his McGrath crap/moderator baiting and my de-friending people with fake cancer on Facebook. Life is too short for negative energy.

 

 

Kerbside was THE BEST. I still miss her every day. I hope you get some helpful news for your dad in coming weeks. Good Luck to your family.

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Sometimes sun has nothing to do with it either. Girl at work (<30yo with an 18mth old) found one where you would normally expect a saddle sore. No nude sunbaking. Lymph nodes gone and on her last available treatment. Shit disease. Can't help with your questions though.

 

 

Injury to the skin (especially a repetitive injury) is also a risk factor. Especially for squamous-cell carcinoma - just had one of these excised from my cheek (just under the sunglass line) it started as a pimple but then didn't heal and a couple of months later went to Dr and .... now it is gone and I have a little red scar to remind me to use sunscreen - even for rides that start at 5am.

 

 

Thanks for the reminder - must have that saddle sore that keeps comming back looked at again - the "that is an ingrown hair" line seems a little shakey after four years

 

EDIT: sheeet now that I've read the whole thread I think I'd beter go this week...

Edited by trifun

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Well I had my trip to the hospital on Monday morning to have my first (and hopefully only ever) Basal Cell Carcenoma removed from my scalp. (I'm 36)

 

Here is the after-math photo for a gruesome reminder of the importance of covering up.

 

As you can see, this is on the top of my head, not normally a spot where I would get sunburnt so it shows that you really need to cover up.

 

I am in a lot of pain and have been 3 days off work thus far - will probably return tomorrow if the light-headedness goes away.

 

There is nothing healthy about a tan! I've never deliberately sunbaked for any length of time over say 10-20 mins before getting bored going swimming instead and even then it would be with sunscreen. So it can happen to anyone.

 

The Carcenoma itself was around the size of a 10 cent piece and appeared over the last year. Thought it was some kind of pimple at first.

 

It was cut out and a flap stretched across my scalp to cover it so much of the pain is from the skin stretching. The scar is approximately 2 x 4.5cm long.

 

 

head.jpg

Edited by BC_J400

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Good luck BC_J400, hope that is the last of that!

 

Parkside...I don't know what to say as I can't imagine what you and your dad are going through, even after reading about it...

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Ouch, that looks sore. Heal well, and hop that's the last of it.

 

Parky, thanks for sharing your Dad's story. Hope he gets on top of it soon.

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