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Potential Melanoma

18 Sep 2019 15:04

Hi, I'm Becky and i'm 23. I've posted here a few times however have just recently plucked up the courage to go and get my moles checked. I have many moles, all different shapes, sizes colours etc. The scary thing is, I took no notice of my skin for years when i was around 15-21 and would use sunbeds and loved going on holiday and getting a tan. However, in the last few years i have realised just how many i have that i've never noticed before and i am terrified. This summer i barely dared go out in the sun. I don't have particularly fair skin and tan quite dark in the sun but for some reason have about 50 moles around my body.

Today i went to see my GP, however it was impossible for her to look at all of them. She clearly stated that I have a lot of moles of all diferent shapes and sizes so it is possible that even though some may appear obscure, they're normal. ( i think it's their job to be reassuring)

She picked up on one on my neck she thought looked a bit odd becasue it has little dots inside and isn't completely round. It's pretty flat and is positioned between the creases in my neck so spends most of its life creased (if you get me). It's quite dark and it's now i've fully took notice of it, it doesn't look nice! I don't even remeber it been there or looking so dark. It like a round dark flat freckle. She reassured me she thought it was nothing but because i couldn't tell her how long it had been there she reffered me to a dermatologist. This has terrified me as i think it's only been there around a year or 2 and i know new moles are a huge warning sign of Melanoma. I have so many moles that i couldnt tell you whether they have been there forever or not. 

I've already had my apt through for the dematologist which is good news but i'm so scared now it feels real. She said they will look at all my moles which i guess is quite reassuring in a way as i dont want to leave knowing they havent looked at everything. 

Is it normal to develop moles in your 20's? This seems to be when many of mine have popped up. The worrying thing is that many are dark, round, big and some raised but the GP did have a good look at my arms, back and chest and she said none look abnormal.

I have really bad healthy anxiety and this worry has been weighing me down for years from my past sunbed use. Has anyone been in my situation before? I'm so scared. I keep thinking i have caused this myself and people are going to say 'i told you so' if it is bad news. The scary thing is, almost every girl i know regualrly uses sunbeds several times and week and now it makes me feel physically sick when i see them.

Any reassurence about what to expect will be helpful!!

Thanks, Becky xxx

Potential Melanoma

18 Sep 2019 15:11 in response to RebeccaB

My mum has a few moles, she said they were there ever since I was born, and she was in her 20s then. Probably nothing to worry about.

Potential Melanoma

18 Sep 2019 19:04 in response to RebeccaB

Hi Becky,

It's good that you have a dermatologist appointment as they are the best people to give you a thorough check and hopefully will put your mind at rest. Having a lot of moles (I have too) is difficult to keep an eye on but doesn't necessarily mean any will be suspicious. Also, it's quite normal for new moles to appear any time up to the age of 40 so at your age that's not something to worry about. 

Obviously, as you already know, using sunbeds does increase the chance of getting melanoma but please don't think that anyone would blame you for causing any possible harm to your health. The important thing is for everyone to learn that sunbeds are dangerous and not to use them in the future. Hopefully you will come away from your appointment with a clean bill of health. It might be an idea for you to ask the consultant if 'mole mapping' is a possibility - this is where all the moles are checked, photographed and recorded so that any possible future changes can be picked up quickly. The main thing is not to let your worry take over your life - be aware of your moles but don't overthink it. Good luck and please let us know how you get on.

Angie (melanoma patient)

Potential Melanoma

18 Sep 2019 20:29 in response to AngieT

Thanks for your response Angie. But at the moment I’m sick with worry! I barely did any work today and couldn’t even focus during my workout. Nothing has even been confirmed yet I’m thinking and worrying about having cancer and if it has spread etc etc. I’m my own worst enemy and nothing has even happened yet. I have majorly bad health anxiety and I don’t tend to get any relief from it until I have answers sadly. Ive lived like this since a young age and it’s so debilitating. This to me is probably 20x what it would be to someone else.

I wish there was more restrictions around sunbed use. They have warning signs on cigarettes and they should also have them in tanning salons because they’re so glamorised it makes me sick. Even when people know their is a risk, they’re so accessible and you just think it won’t happen to me until it does.

my appointment is on the 27th which is quite soon and my mum is coming with me which I’m happy about. I will definitely enquire about skin mapping as it’s so hard to keep track when you have so many moles.

Also, thanks for confirming that new moles are relatively normal! Google says otherwise so I’ve been killing myself with worry over that. 

Anyway, I’ll be sure to update on how my appointment goes. Thanks again for your reassurance xxx

 

Potential Melanoma

27 Sep 2019 10:34 in response to RebeccaB

Hello, thought I’d come back and give an update on my derm appointment. So he looked at all the moles on my back, chest and stomach area he said they all look fine. The one on my neck which I was referred for he said he wants to shave off but he said it looks like nothing even after he took super close up pictures!! I kind of trust his instinct as he was around 80 so I assume he’s done this for a super long time and knows a melanoma when he sees one. He said because I have a lot of moles all shapes and sizes etc it’s most likely benign or ‘dysplastic’. I’m a lot less anxious than I was a week ago! 

Going back to have it shaved off later next week so let’s hope the results are okay and I get on with my life as a normal 23 year old should be !!! 

Thanks,

Becky xx

Potential Melanoma

27 Sep 2019 16:33 in response to RebeccaB

That's great to hear Becky. Sounds like you got a good dermatologist there! I'm sure your skin will be well cared for from now on xxx