Patient Comments: Cancer - Describe Your Experience

Please describe your experience with cancer.

Comment from: Meg, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: January 14

Two years ago I had a mole on the inside of my left thigh that contained several colors: black, blue and red. My primary care doctor did not think it was suspicious but because my grandfather had multiple melanomas during his life I requested a referral to the dermatologist. The spot was biopsied, the dermatologist told me it was malignant melanoma and scheduled me for surgery the next week. I caught it early, stage 1A, no metastasis and no lymph node involvement. After having many dysplastic nevi (pre-cancers) removed at 3 month and 6 month visits, I have now been put on a yearly schedule. Chest x-rays and CT scans are clear, cancer free.

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Comment from: Betty, 75 or over Female (Patient) Published: November 11

I got melanoma on the back side of upper arm in 1980, stage 4. One of my assistants noticed an orange spot on the back of my arm that looked like one that her now deceased sister had earlier. I began to monitor it and noticed a change. A slight bump appeared within that spot. After having my general practitioner check it, he thought it was okay. I let it go for about a month then a second bump appeared. I went to a dermatologist and he performed drastic surgery immediately in his office. The report came back as melanoma and he sent me to another doctor who performed a profusion, a new procedure at that time. Anyhow I am a cancer survivor at the age of 77, with the help of the excellent doctors. I was 40 at the time with a 9 year old daughter. My family and good wishes pulled me through.

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Comment from: mimi, 55-64 Female (Caregiver) Published: April 08

My sister was diagnosed with cancer of the bile duct in her liver in September of 2009. She went through extensive chemo and radiation and lost weight down to 92 pounds before she got a liver transplant in February. She was recovering and was sent home a week later. She lived until March 11 of this year. She died from a blood clot, but I don't understand why. I believe if the doctor had tested her when she first started going for headaches and other problems, she might have been saved. They were treating her for thyroid problems. She turned yellow, and her husband took her to the emergency room. That is when they found out she had tumors in her bile duct. Please get second opinions if you are not getting better. I wish things could have been different for her.

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Comment from: cancer warrior, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: October 14

I had just been blessed with a 2 1/2 year old baby boy in November 2005. The first year was really tough for me for he was a meth baby and could not sleep at night. The crying would go on for hours. I would hold and sing to him and one night I noticed that I was getting severe back pain and pain in my upper right rib cage. The following year, I found a mass in my right breast and suddenly, I got a strange feeling in my gut. For the next week, I would make up stories about the mass and finally had to come to conclusion this could be serious. In January 2007, I got a mammogram and within 10 days I got the letter and a phone call from my GYN. A second mammogram and ultrasound was performed, then another call for a needle biopsy. That's when I was diagnosed with "Abrasive lobor carcinoma." Within a week, I had a breast MRI, blood work, a port placed in my right side of my chest and my first chemo treatment. As I continue to receive chemo, every week, there were times I wanted to die. I lost my hair and my eyelashes, and my finger nails began to loosen and fall off. I had sores in my mouth and a metallic taste, which made it hard to eat or swallow. I would cry everyday when I looked at myself in the mirror and wondered if I was going to make it. Although, when I went in front of the public, I was smiling and continued to work. Attitude is very important and not to ask “Why me?” (although it is very normal to ask), but ask, “What can I do to beat this? " I was in stage 4, and the cancer had spread to my liver, spine, pelvis, and ribs. By the grace of God and a good Doctor, my life was spared. I had so many people praying for me. I saw God's face and who is really is. I was in remission or a year and a half. It now has come back for the third time, but I have peace and will fight this battle again.

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Comment from: Kay, 55-64 Male (Caregiver) Published: October 18

My husband had a heart transplant in 2009 and 3 years later he was diagnosed with bladder cancer. Due to his transplant and other serious issues dealing with rejection of his donor heart on 3 occasions they would not give him chemotherapy or radiation. They opted to have his bladder scraped out every three months which was successful after almost a year. My concern is that he may have gotten it from CellCept, his anti-rejection drug as his doctors are discussing lowering his dosage as it is a cancer-causing drug.

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