Toe amputation due to Acral Lentiginous Melanoma

Posted By
instrospection
2/8/2018 8:26pm
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Replies: 3

Hi Everyone

I was diagnosed with acral lentiginous melanoma in December 2017 located under my big toe nail on my right foot. On the 9th of Januray 2018, I underwent surgery where the big toe was amputated halfway in the second phalanx and two sentinel lymph nodes were removed in the groin region. 

Hopefully I will get pathology results soon and understand what the status. In the mean time, I am looking for people who have had a similar experience with losing the big toe.

How have you adapted to walking, are you able to run... I have a lot of questions in this regard and it would be great to share experiences.

I also started a blog to share my experience with others going through this

Hi Introspection - There are several people on the board dealing with or having dealt with this type of mel. Hopefully, they'll see this post and answer themselves but, to get you started, there was a post in November that may help - here's the link:

https://www.melanoma.org/find-support/patient-community/mpip-melanoma-pa...

Wishing you the best outcomes!!

Barb

I was diagnosed with Acral Lentiginous Melanoma in 2010 (Stage 2A), but not on a toe. My melanoma was on the heel of my foot. I wound up with a baseball-sized excision on my heel, extending onto the sole of my foot. I was very concerned how I would be impacted by the loss of that skin...all the way down to the bone. The full-thickness skin graft that I was given had no feeling or sensation, so I wondered how that would impact my ability to stand, walk, run, ski, etc. 

In the end, the body is incredibly adaptable. The first time I stood on that foot, after about a month in a wheelchair, it felt so strange...like I was standing on a brick. I could not sense the pressure on my heel and would occasionally stumble. But pretty quickly I began to realize that I could actually feel pressure on my heel, just not in the same way as before. The bone, cartilage, and tissues below my graft still had feeling and my body learned how to make use of that new information in order to stablize my stance and manage my gait. 

I believe the same will be true for you. Those things your body learned when you were 1 year of age, as you progressed from crawling to walking, will need to be re-learned. Your muscle memory will be challenged and revised quickly...almost without your conscious knowlege. The body and brain are miraculous in how they make the seemingly impossible so completely commonplace that you will eventually not even give it a second thought.

Best of luck with you lab results and with your recovery!
Mark