MPIP: Melanoma Patients Information Page

The MPIP is the oldest and largest community of people affected by melanoma hosted through the Melanoma Research Foundation. It is designed to provide support and information to caregivers, patients, family and friends. Once you have been touched by melanoma—either as a patient or as a family member or friend of a patient—you become part of a community. It is not a community anyone joins willingly. But if you must be part of this group, you will find no better place to find the tools you need in your journey with this cancer, and the friends who can make that journey more bearable.

The information on the bulletin board is open and accessible to everyone. To add a new topic or to post a reply, you must be a registered user. Please note that you will be able to post both topics and replies anonymously even though you are logged in. All posts must abide by MRF posting policies.

Expand/ Collapse Topic
Replies By
View Topic
AnnaBanana30's picture
Replies 9
Last reply 10/13/2012 - 8:17pm

To say I'm devastated would be an understatment. My dad first found out he had melanoma in late 2008 when my mom discovered a large mole on his back that was half red and half black. He immediately went to the doctor and they removed was stage 2 I believe at that point. By March 2011 he was stage 3 and by early fall 2011 he was stage 4. He did several rounds of Temodar, Yervoy and radiation and nothing would slow this beast down.


Watching him go through all of this pain and suffering has been excrutiating to say the least. I hate this disease and what it did to him. The only comfort I've been able to find is that he is out of pain and is in paradise...pain free, next to God. I will see him again. He'll be up there waiting on me. It is my life mission to spread the word about this terrible cancer. There needs to be more public knowlege on how serious and deadly melanoma.


I hate this.

Login or register to post replies.

bruski1959's picture
Replies 6
Last reply 6/1/2012 - 3:33pm

Jackie had her 4th Yervoy infusion 84 days or 12 weeks to the day from her first Yervoy infusion. Had to delay the 4th treatment while Jackie completed a round of antibiotics for pneumonia. As usual, Jackie has had a lot of fatigue. Had nausea too that was treatable with anti-nausea meds. Next oncology appointment is in 10 days. Expect to get the next PET/CT scan scheduled soon to compare with the last scan done in January prior to the first Yervoy infusion. Hoping and praying that the melanoma tumors in Jackie's left axial lymph nodes, lungs, and liver have responded well to the Yervoy treatment. We're coming up on six months since Jackie's stage 4 diagnosis. We're counting down the days to our 20th wedding anniversary. We will be renewing our wedding vows with friends and family on June 9th at our home church.


Bruce and Jackie

Login or register to post replies.

My partner has just finished 10 sessions of whole brain radiation. This had the expected side effects - fatigue, nausea etc. Some interesting facts: the nausea hit at the same time each day (3am) and was unlike the usual "throw up" ie no discernible smell. Anti nausea meds were prescribed only after we reported the side effects and these were wonderful! We'll request them straight up next time! The worst symptoms were during the last 2 sessions and our biggest fear was the accumulative effects of radiation and not knowing where the peak would be. 2 weeks after his last session he still has some slight nausea but is otherwise good and living well. Next step is more scans to see if there are any more brain mets. Then the possibility of 2 sessions of targeted radiation. This seems to be standard treatment in Australia. Hope this info helps!

Login or register to post replies.

Snickers60's picture
Replies 6
Last reply 5/9/2012 - 8:15am

Anyone have this side effect ?    Poor thing is burning me up here in the deep south.   Wears winter warm ups - robe - blanket over head.

Is his blood thin you think ?    Sorry to be such a pest but we are so new at ZEL !

Thanks for your help.

Nancy  (wife of Warrior Wayne)

Matt. 15:13 "Every plant that my Heavenly Father hath not planted shall be pulled up by the roots". "With God all things are possible" ! Keep the FAITH !

Login or register to post replies.

Webbie73's picture
Replies 5
Last reply 5/7/2012 - 6:36pm

I need some help with sunscreen. I am allergic to chemical sunscreen but they did work. Now I am using physical sunscreens and I don't think they are working. Just running errands in and out of stores and the car results in a pink chest. I was using SPF 30. Any suggestions? And yes I was wearing a hat but my upper chest still gets exposed...not interested in wearing a turtle neck in warm weather. ;-)

Login or register to post replies.

green8300's picture
Replies 2
Last reply 5/6/2012 - 2:12pm
Replies by: Bob B., Minnesota

is a mitotic rate of 2 considered high? with no ulceration and a .75 thickness?

Login or register to post replies.

Thank you to all those who have signed up to support the Outrun the Sun Race in May.  We have seen some great support and lots of interest so far for both the Race in May as well as our annual race in Indianapolis.

There is still time to participate in the Race in May and you can participate wherever you are located. 


The Race in May is a "virtual, yet real" run/walk that will occur throughout May (National Melanoma and Skin Cancer Awareness month) and anyone can participate no matter where you live.  You can make this event whatever you want it to be by creating a team or by participating on your own. Here's a link to the registration web  

Outrun the Sun, Inc. is dedicated to building national awareness of melanoma and other skin cancers, educating communities about preventive measures that reduce melanoma’s incidence rate, and to raising funds for melanoma research, leading to effective treatments and a potential cure.  For more information on Outrun the Sun please visit the website

Login or register to post replies.

Snickers60's picture
Replies 1
Last reply 5/6/2012 - 11:41am
Replies by: Minnesota

Wayne loves his new clothes from COOLIBAR !   They are not inexpensive, but well worth it if they keep him Safe !   They have really great colors

and styles too.    He loves his new Crocodile Dundee Hat ! 

Thought someone else might be interested.

Blessings and Health to all,


Nancy (Devoted wife of Warrior Wayne)

Matt. 15:13 "Every plant that my Heavenly Father hath not planted shall be pulled up by the roots". "With God all things are possible" ! Keep the FAITH !

Login or register to post replies.

Low Oxygen Levels Could Drive Cancer Growth, Research Suggests

ScienceDaily (May 3, 2012) — Low oxygen levels in cells may be a primary cause of uncontrollable tumor growth in some cancers, according to a new University of Georgia study. The authors' findings run counter to widely accepted beliefs that genetic mutations are responsible for cancer growth.


If hypoxia, or low oxygen levels in cells, is proven to be a key driver of certain types of cancer, treatment plans for curing the malignant growth could change in significant ways, said Ying Xu, Regents-Georgia Research Alliance Eminent Scholar and professor of bioinformatics and computational biology in the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences.

The research team analyzed samples of messenger RNA data-also called transcriptomic data-from seven different cancer types in a publicly available database. They found that long-term lack of oxygen in cells may be a key driver of cancer growth. The study was published in the early online edition of the Journal of Molecular Cell Biology.

Previous studies have linked low oxygen levels in cells as a contributing factor in cancer development, but not as the driving force for cancer growth. High incidence rates of cancer around the world cannot be explained by chance genetic mutations alone, Xu said. He added that bioinformatics, which melds biology and computational science, has allowed researchers to see cancer in a new light. Gene-level mutations may give cancer cells a competitive edge over healthy cells, but the proposed new cancer growth model does not require the presence of common malfunctions such as a sudden proliferation of oncogenes, precursors to cancer cells.

"Cancer drugs try to get to the root -- at the molecular level -- of a particular mutation, but the cancer often bypasses it," Xu said. "So we think that possibly genetic mutations may not be the main driver of cancer."

Much of cancer research so far has focused on designing drug treatments that counteract genetic mutations associated with a particular type of cancer. In their study, the researchers analyzed data downloaded from the Stanford Microarray Database via a software program to detect abnormal gene expression patterns in seven cancers: breast, kidney, liver, lung, ovary, pancreatic and stomach. The online database allows scientists to examine information from microarray chips, which are small glass slides containing large amounts of gene material.

Xu relied on the gene HIF1A as a biomarker of the amount of molecular oxygen in a cell. All seven cancers showed increasing amounts of HIF1A, indicating decreasing oxygen levels in the cancer cells.

Low oxygen levels in a cell interrupt the activity of oxidative phosphorylation, a term for the highly efficient way that cells normally use to convert food to energy. As oxygen decreases, the cells switch to glycolysis to produce their energy units, called ATP. Glycolysis is a drastically less efficient way to obtain energy, and so the cancer cells must work even harder to obtain even more food, specifically glucose, to survive. When oxygen levels dip dangerously low, angiogenesis, or the process of creating new blood vessels, begins. The new blood vessels provide fresh oxygen, thus improving oxygen levels in the cell and tumor and slowing the cancer growth-but only temporarily.

"When a cancer cell gets more food, it grows; this makes the tumor biomass bigger and even more hypoxic. In turn, the energy-conversion efficiency goes further down, making the cells even more hungry and triggering the cells to get more food from blood circulation, creating a vicious cycle. This could be a key driver of cancer," Xu said.

Xu explained that this new cancer-growth model could help explain why many cancers become drug resistant so quickly-often within three to six months. He stressed the importance of testing the new model through future experimental cancer research. If the model holds, researchers will need to search for methods to prevent hypoxia in cells in the first place, which could result in a sea change in cancer treatment.

Additional authors of this study include Juan Cui, Xizeng Mao and Victor Olman, all of UGA, and Phil Hastings of Baylor College of Medicine. Xu also has a joint appointment with Jilin University in China.

I'm me, not a statistic. Praying to not be one for years yet.

Login or register to post replies.

Anonymous's picture
Replies 0

RESEARCH SEMINAR: Thursday, May 10th • 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

“Melanoma 2012: Transforming Cancer
Treatment Paradigms”
Steven J. O’Day, M.D.

Beverly Hills Cancer Center

8150 Beverly Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90048

CONTACT : Heather Grant  (323) 307-6921 (323) 307-6921

Hors d'oeuvre and beverages provided • Free parking in the rear of the building

Login or register to post replies.

Anonymous's picture
Replies 2
Last reply 5/4/2012 - 11:47am
Replies by: Janner, lhaley

I found out one of the moles I had removed was a severly atypical with some signs it could be melanoma in situ.  So very severly.  They say this is good.  Just need it taken off then good to go.  Not a reason to lose sleep they say.  So do I need to treat my skin different?  Do I need to cover up in sun as extremely as a melanoma patient?  Or as Dr says am I good to go?

Login or register to post replies.

deardad's picture
Replies 6
Last reply 5/4/2012 - 7:17pm

Such bad news today and I'm devasted. My dad has 6 new brain mets and progression through the body.

They are starting WBR next week and he is starting Temolozide tomorrow. So sad...what can I expect can someone please advise me.

Thank you in advance.


Login or register to post replies.

Anonymous's picture
Replies 1
Last reply 5/4/2012 - 9:59am
Replies by: SoCalDave

Login or register to post replies.

Gene_S's picture
Replies 15
Last reply 5/20/2012 - 8:44pm

I had my scans on Friday and the results are great.

One small 1.3 mm lesion left out of 9 and it is almost immeasurable.  We are so excited can't wait to say NED.

Just for those that don't know Gene he is on the clinical trial with Ipi at 10 mg/kg and GMCSF self shots 14 days on and 7 days off.  He has been receiving Ipi after the initial 4 doses every 12 weeks on the maintenance part of this trial.  He started it on Mar. 3, 2011.  After 4 surgeries he had an inoperable lesion on the head at the C1-2 level.  He also had 3 sub q's in the same area and it had metastisized to the liver and lungs as well.

We are very pleased with these results and wish to share so we can give others hope.  You can check his profile for more information on his journey which started in Jan. 2008.

Judy (loving wife and caregiver of Gene Stage IV and almost NED).

Live 4 today. Thank God for all he has done for us. Looking forward to enjoying tomorrow.

Login or register to post replies.