Metastatic Malignant Melanoma Satge 3B

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11/17/2011 7:47am
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I was diagnosed last year with Melanoma on my back. I had a wide local excision and all was fine. I went for check ups every 3 months. On the day of my 12th month check my consultant discovered a lump under my left arm. After a biopsy, yes it was back. I was diagnosed with metastatic malignant melanoma stage 3b. I had a full lymph nose disection 8 weeks ago and am now suffering with lymphodeama. I have read numerous sites, mostly giving bad vibes and bad prognosis of suffers of this type of cancer. I was wondering if there is actually any good news stories from people that have had this and years down the line have seen no reacurrance. I am only 40 years old and feel that already i am a sitting duck waiting for it to come back and there be nothing more to be done. Please please any positive stories or help would be much appreciated.

Regards Lee (stoke on trent, United Kingdom)

Not so fast, Lee.  There are many of us on the board who are Stage 3 or 4 who have been around for a long time.  There are lots of new treatments and advances out there.  I had an LND 6 years ago after melanoma was discovered in a lymph node in my neck. No primary so it is hard to stage, but at least Stage 3.   So far, so good.  I am sure others will respond with encouraging stories.

You are in a tough stage of the process, though.  Early in the diagnosis it seems so scary - every twinge or gas pain is another met.  Over time you develop a treatment plan and learn that many, many people have survived. You get more comfortable dealing with mel.

I hope this helps.  Please keep posting on your progress.

Fen

Lee, sorry you're having to deal with melanoma, it's such an evil monster.  I just wanted to share my story with you quickly. I've been diagnosed with 3 separate primaries - first was in 2003, I was 21 years old, it was on my back, stage 1. The second was on my left arm, thin melanoma, stage 0, that was in 2005. Then in 2006, when I was 25, I was diagnosed with stage 3a melanoma, mole on the back of my leg, micromets in sentinel node in my right groin.  After the final diagnosis, I was pretty devastated, three melanomas in 3 years was too much. I felt pretty hopeless, thought I'd never go more than a few years without another primary or a recurrence. BUT I fought on, I had a complete lymph node dissection at the end of 2006, then I completed 9 months of interferon in 2007.  And today I'm 4 1/2 years NED, soon to be 5 years in March - sometimes I can't believe it! It's been a long road, not a day goes by that I don't think about melanoma, but I've found as time goes on, I'm less worried and scared, and I just try to live life.

I know it's tough right now to imagine the years ahead, years of NED, but it is possible.  There are many people out there with positive stories, and hopefully they'll share them with you here.  Hang in there! This is a good forum for questions, info and support, so you're in the right place.

Sending positive thoughts your way!

~SarahS 

Never say never...