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Wilma is a skin cancer specialist nurse, here to answer your questions about different...
I finally got in to see a nurse practitioner yesterday. She seemed to really have a sense of urgency, which I appreciate. She has referred me to a new dermatologist and plastic surgeon. I went in today for a chest xray and blood work. Mammogram is scheduled for tomorrow. I went in for BCC, but after telling her I've lost 40 pounds in one year without trying and have a nagging pain under my ribs, she ordered several other tests. I'm glad to be getting checked out, but more anxious about my other symptoms. It's time to hurry up and wait.
You are in the US, aren't you? Is it NORMAL that they throw all those tests at you for a BCC? If so, amazing service (though I'm sure the hospital will charge a small fortune). Let's hope that nothing sinister shows up but brilliant that you're getting such great investigative care.
How are you feeling?
I feel great, other than the rib pain. This is my first time, so I'm not sure if this much testing is typical. My other symptoms is what led her to add on the additional tests. I am experiencing breast pain in an isolated area and rib pain that won't go away. I haven't had any injuries, so this concerned her, especially with a drastic unintentional weight loss. Yes, i went in for skin cancer, but now I'm worried what monsters these new tests may find. I know BCC rarely metastasizes, but fear I may be the exception to the rule. As I mentioned, I am only 35. :(
I have good news and bad news. Good- blood work and mammogram both look normal. (Still waiting on chest xray results.) Bad- The dermatologist I was referred to contacted me and after discussion of the location of my BCC I was told I need to go to the plastic surgeon first. They won't even examine my skin head to toe until next June. Now I wait for another office to contact me for an appointment. Don't worry, I'm keeping my chin up. I was contacted by my employer today to schedule an interview for a better position, so at least I have something good to report.
Thank you for the update - that's great that you got the all clear on the bloods and the mammogram. I'm sure the chest X-ray will come back soon too.
Did they give you an indication of timing for getting your BCC sorted?
Good luck with the job interview.
Chest xray is clear also! No, I have no timeline at all. That is the part that is unbearable for me. I feel like I'm being pulled in too many directions. I'm not good at being the center of attention. I'm actually nervous to get into a new position just to turn around and take time off for surgery. I feel like a fraud if I accept any offers.
My advice would be not to tell your employers about your situation until it's much clearer than it is today especially if there's a promotion at stake.
If they get a sniff of cancer, they may run scared when it may well turn out that you need quite limited treatment and will be able to work almost like 'normal' after treatment.
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