Stage 1a 15 months anxiety consumes me

Posted By
Anonymous
3/10/2018 4:07am
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Replies: 3

My husband was diagnosed with stage 1a on his neck behind his left ear in December 2015.  He had a wle with sentinel node biopsy, they took two out, and he’s had his regular checkups.  They even did the gene testing and told him that he has “perfect genes”.  However, for the last couple of months I have been so worried that he’s going to have a recurrence that I can hardly function and I’m having extreme separation anxiety.  I’m worried because he’s gained weight and I’m worried that it’s not just weight gain, but swelling.  He’s also been diagnosed with sinus disease and he’s been blowing a lot of blood out of his nose.  He’s had weird sensations in his right foot twice now that he’s told me about and he’s acted like he’s had pains in his stomache a few times, but when I ask what’s wrong he tells me that he’s fine.  Should I contact his oncologist and tell her about these symptoms or am I overreacting?

Welcome anon.... Be diligent and call oncololgist .. you cannot take any chances..and please see someone regarding YOUR health and anxiety. you must be well to help your husband.

good luck and all the best,

dessie

You need some perspective.  I'm not saying discount any symptoms.  But you need to ask yourself, if he would have complained of foot pain or an upset stomach before his melanoma diagnosis, would you have immediately thought "cancer"?  Because the answer should be no.  Stage 1a has an excellent prognosis.  If he has occassional symptoms, then it's unlikely cancer related.  Typically you would have ongoing issues in the same area  if you had any issues at all.  Most people don't have symptoms.   Foot pain?  So unlikely to be melanoma related from a neck primary that it wouldn't even enter my mind as a possibility.  IF YOUR HUSBAND feels like he needs to an oncologist, then that's what he needs to do.  However, that is his choice, not yours.  You shouldn't contact his oncologist in my opinion.  He's a grown man and knows his own body and if he truly feels like things are not right, then HE should definitely check with his oncologist.  (Most oncologists don't even see stage 1a individuals). 

You, on the other hand, should probably consider some type of counseling.  I'm not saying this to be mean or anything, but this is obviously consuming you and that isn't right.  You are experiencing some type of PTSD (not professional at all - just makes sense to me).  You are not putting the trauma in perspective.  Does he have 100% survival rate?  No.  Could he die in a car accident tomorrow?  Yes.  Are either likely?  No.  You need to figure out a way to lessen YOUR anxiety because that isn't good for your health!  If you are reading the internet at all related to melanoma, then you need to immediately stop that - it will NOT help with anxiety at all.

Just my 2 cents.  I've been stage 1a/1b/0 for 26 years and have seen countless stage 1 people on this board over the last 16 years.  Most are long gone from this site and out living their lives!

Janner, thank you for not being out living your life when you're here helping us! (You've helped me.)

And to the original poster, I'm the wife too, a newbie here, and had terrible anxiety and middle-of-the-night terror when my husband was first  diagnosed. We knew he'd be a 2 or a 3 (and is in fact 3c). The people here, Bubbles' primer, and the team at the melanoma center we visit grounded me. Everyone is different; knowing what I'm up against helps me. Otherwise my imagination runs wild. I'm okay now, but will still look into support services for family members provided by the melanoma center - even if my husband doesn't partake. So ditto what Janner suggested about counseling, and it may (?) be a bonus if it's with providers who work with cancer patients/families. 

If you've gone to appointments with your husband, were the doctors and nurses helpful, reassuring? Because a call to them - for yourself - may be useful, and they may suggest a counselor. And if your husband signed off on them sharing all info with you, they may be able to ease your mind specifically about him. 

It was difficult yet critical for me to quickly learn not to dump all of my fears on my husband whenever I felt them. If you think your husband is neglecting his health, I hope you can discuss that calmly with him, and urge him to see the appropriate doctor(s). Best to you!

Beth