Pregnancy After Melanoma

Posted By
WendyI37
2/9/2018 12:17am
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Replies: 8

Hi there, I've been here before when first diagnosed with a Stage 1a melanoma. It was .30mm, no mitosis, no ulceration, not near any vessels or lymphatic areas etc... My actual biopsy itself had complete clear margins, and then my WLE came back clear as well. I go to a derm every 6 months now with no further issues simce diagnosis. My diagnosis was Dec.6th, 2013. Well, at the time of diagnosis I was never considering having another child so I had an IUD put in and thought nothing more of it. Here it is a little over 4 years later and I'm newly married with crazy baby fever right now. I was never told to wait or to not have a child, but here I am petrified to try to have a baby because of all theu controversial stuff about melanoma and pregnancy. I've heard many people say once you have melanoma you always have it. It's just lying dormamt waiting to be triggered. Then I've heard that pregnancy will cause it to recur, or a new one to come up, or it come back with a vengeance and be stage IV. I don't want to not have another baby out of fear, but I also don't want to leave the children I already have behind just because my bilogical clock is ticking again. I've literally cried over this because I feel like my life will forever be on hold because of my diagnosis and I'm not getting any younger. I really need some help here. Has anyone had a pregnancy after melanoma and everything went great with no issues during or after? If so please let me know. I'm sorry for such a long post but no one else understands my feelings. I will add that my derm, my primary care physicians, and another Doctor that deals with melanoma all gave me the go ahead. But after that stupid me Googled and got scared out of my wits. I so much would love to add to my family, but not at the cost of me leaving them behind. Please help someone. :(

Wendy Ingram

jennunicorn - (2/9/2018 - 11:14am)

Have another baby! You had a very early melanoma, it's been 4 years, I would not hesitate to have a baby. I am just newly NED again after having melanoma spread to multiple lymph nodes. I plan on waiting 3 years, if melanoma stays away, then I am starting the family I have always wanted. Melanoma will not stop me from living the life I have had planned long before it came into my life. My oncologist is on board with my plan as well. You cannot let your diagnosis from 4 years ago make decisions for you now, it's gone, you're in the clear, go for it. Google will ALWAYS have worst case senarios for anything... but worst case senarios are NOT the norm. My oncologist told me she has seen multiple stage 3 and 4 young female patients go on to get pregnant and have babies with no melanoma interfering. Keep up the good work going to the derm and being aware of any changes to your skin. Congrats on your new marriage and I will be happy to congratulate you when you are pregnant with your next child :) 

Hugs,

Jenn - stage IV NED - Completed Ipi/Nivo (Yervoy/Opdivo) + surgery

WendyI37 - (2/9/2018 - 3:35pm)

Thank you so much Jenn. I went through with my appointment today and had my IUD removed. Once pregnant I'll give an update. It always helps to know others have done this already and did so well. May you forever remain NED and have a beautiful long life with a beautiful family! ❤

Wendy Ingram

"no one understands my feelings"

True. It is way too personal. I wouldn't try. You have explained it well so you must have a good grasp.

This is an older study. But it does help sort out the 2 distinct issues; Can pregnancy itself trigger reoccurance? (no clear evidence). How should the probability of reoccurance generally factor into a pregnancy decision? (it would seem 3 years' wait for a stage 1 is sufficiently cautious)

https://www.hindawi.com/journals/drp/2010/214745/

OTOH, I've also found lots of good in changing life expectations and sometimes "thank rather than defy" my MM diagnosis for pushing me to let go of expectations I did not really need in my life.  Mostly I agree with Jenn to not let this change my life where I can help it.

That's where your unique feelings come back into play.

Good Luck.

WendyI37 - (2/11/2018 - 2:44am)

Thank you for sharing the link Threefitty. I appreciate the response. I just wished there were some folks here who have gotten pregnant after their diagnosis and have done very well. Hearing the successful stories would be very encouraging right now.

Wendy Ingram

Janner - (2/11/2018 - 11:13am)

There are LOTS who have done just that after a stage 1a melanoma.  The reason you aren't seeing them here is they are still stage 1a and have no reason to visit a site like this anymore!  They've gone on to live normal lives without melanoma.  They are busy taking care of the kids and would not ever think about coming here and reporting they were fine after pregnancy.  You just need to remember the main complement of this board - newly diagnosed or actively fighting disease.  Long term stage I people (except weirdos like me) just don't stick around!

WendyI37 - (2/11/2018 - 7:22pm)

Well, us newly diagnosed and all stagers appreciate folks like you Janner. It helps us to see the 97-98% that are still doing well years later. It's such an encouragement to us. Thanks for caring to be here!

Wendy Ingram

I had a baby 5 years after my stage 1 diagnosis.  Live your life - be happy.  I don't attribute my recurrence to the pregnancy and neither do any of my doctors. It was another 5 years before there was any sign of melanoma.  If we believed what we found on Google we'd all be in a heap of trouble due to eating too much red meat or not drinking enough green tea or some such thing.  

Good wishes to you.

Jennifer

WendyI37 - (2/11/2018 - 7:20pm)

Wow, so 10 years out from a stage 1 you recurred? Ugh, this demon never leaves folks alone. I'm sorry for your recurrence. I know that had to be hard. I hate this disease. May you be NED forever on out! Thank you for your response. I know you have your own battles and I really do appreciate you taking the time to reply to my post. ❤

Wendy Ingram