Not sure if I should be here~questions....any thoughts appreciated

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6/30/2012 1:19am
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I had a bx returned as "spindle cell melanoma arising in atypical nevus" with "indeterminate malignant potential" in June 2001.  The area was removed but not known if it was fully excised (long story) and I was advised by surgeon that because of the area and other factors it would be a false peace of mind to perform more in depth excision.  I have not thought about this for some time now, but I have had MOHS to remove a BCC (2009) and have full-skin checks every 3-6 months at the discretion of my dermatologist.  This has come back to the front of my mind as I believe I have a recurrence of BCC (next check up in July), I have family hx of melanoma (father and paternal grandmother), and I have since had pain and other issues in the region the original bx was taken as well as other organ systems in the vicinity.  I am now also facing breast lump and wonder if it could be related.  I have not been able to have health insurance for several years now and do not have a PC provider that follows me, so I just don't know if I am connecting unrelated dots or should have reason to worry.

Here are my questions:

1) is it appropriate for me to seek information & stories from those on this site?

2) Shouldn't this have caused more noticable symptoms if it were related?

3) Should I have had bloodwork/is there a blood test that could help exclude this earlier disease process?

4) Can BC and melanoma be related?

I have also had 2 other excisional bx and many punch bx over the years.

I do hope I am not asking inappropriate questions and appreciate any feedback or suggestions to guide me in seeking the right care.  Thank you all very much : )

You posted on the off topic board, not the melanoma board - so you are unlikely to get many responses.

1.  You can post here, but you don't really even know if you've had melanoma.  There's probably limited info we can give you.

2.  Symptoms are variable, sometimes you notice something, other times there are none.

3.  There is no blood test for melanoma.  Blood work is an unreliable indicator for metastatic disease.

4.  Unlikely that your breast lump is related to an excised lesion in 2001.  Breast lumps are very common, most are benign,  and breast cancer has a much higher risk of occuring for every woman than melanoma.

As for your pain, I would truly think it is unrelated and that you are probably "connecting unrelated dots".  For the majority of people, if melanoma recurs, it does so first in the lymph system (lymph nodes), not the organs.  Of course, none of us can know for sure but it truly is unlikely that your lesion from 2001 (which I know we discussed before) is the cause of anything going on now.   Can you find some type of free clinic or reduced rate clinic where you can be monitored by a PC physician?  It just seems like a PCP is a better place to start for unspecific "issues" because truly, almost anything (mostly benign stuff) is probably more likely to explain your issues than melanoma organ involvement.

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