Wilma is a skin cancer specialist nurse, here to answer your questions about different...
Hi Elizabeth8 - as my SCC was fast growing they didn't do a biopsy, just operated to remove it within 4 weeks of it appearing. I was really worried about the scar but it really is healing so well that you can't see it unless you are up very close. I got a referral to a Changing Faces unit which gave me brilliant camouflage makeup which I used initially, but just use ordinary makeup now. Good luck and stop googling lol! x
Firstly I am so sorry to hear what you are going through. This is a fabulous forum full of lovely people with help, advice and stories to share - it has really helped me and made me realise that I am not alone.
I had lentigo maligna (a mole) removed from my left cheek back in January. Like you I am petrified of needles. Yes, the injection does sting slightly but if you count to ten, you won't even get to six. I also had a nurse hold my hand while I had the injection (I am 52!) and that helped to calm me. As did, trying to breathe deeply and slowly.
You will have realised that googling photos and reading up about BCC is the worst thing you can do, but like you, I realised this too late! I find now that sticking to established sites (British Association of Dermatologists, Cancer UK etc) is the way forward.
When you go for your appointments, do go armed with a list of questions and challenge any information you are not too clear on.
I wish you all the very best.
Thank you everybody for your replies. I'm not a very tactile person and the thought of holding a stranger's hand makes my blood curdle lol! My problem is that I shake violently at the thought of needles and I don't understand how they will be able to do a biopsy an inch from my eye if I can't stay still. I'm worried that the biopsy won't happen, and then what?
Hi Elizabeth8 - you really need to tell your consultant how badly you feel and from what you've said I do think sedation would be the best option for you! You maybe need to get someone else to push for this on your behalf? X
The main thing is that you have the procedure. I think whatever we are all going through along the way (procedures, creams, waiting for results), we are doing so because of the bigger picture - skin cancer and getting rid of it stopping it. Maybe speak to your doctor and get a sedative to relax you. And when you have the procedure just try to think that in 10 mins it will all be over.
Wishing you the very best.
I do feel for you right now because you are going through the same emotional experience I had when I was first diagnosed with facial BCC about two months ago. I too looked on the web for information and I came across quite a lot of very successful procedures where the area of skin treated was almost invisible to see. There is also a lot of rubbish posted about skin cancer too by none professionals but I don't look too much now as I want to be positive. I have settled down a lot since I was diagnosed with BCC on my face and am now thinking about how to get along with my life after the treatment. From what I have read skin BCC's are usually local to one spot, don't tend to spread and once removed don't come back. If you leave a BCC and don't have it treated then it may become troublesome so it's better to go through the process advised by your medical team and have it treated. The hospital will take care of you while in their care, it's what they do.
I'm beginning to feel very anxious about my biopsy on Friday. I haven't got much faith that I will be treated with any kindness or sensitivity - I've had some awful experiences with medical people in the past because of my phobic tendencies. I know I'm the only person who actually cares whether I try to get rid of this skin cancer or not and I ought to be brave, but giving myself pep talks won't necessarily help on the day.
I only tend to read the stuff written by medical professionals about skin cancer (other than this forum), so I'm not really sure where the rubbish and misinformation that everyone keeps on mentioning is to be found.
Dear Elizabeth8 - please don't think you're the only one who cares whether you get rid of this - all of us in this community do and I'm sure your friends and family do too! It is really scary and nothing people say will make you not scared, but just think of all the positive wishes being sent your way and please ask for someone to hold your hand durst he procedure as that really helped me! Will be thinking of you on Friday xx
Thank you very much. I think I'm just feeling sorry for myself at the moment!
Hello Elizabeth8, and good morning to you. Try to remember that thousands of people go through the same experience and come out just fine. I will be thinking of you today so remember people do care.
Hello Elizabeth - you have every right to feel sorry for yourself! What you are going through is a huge ordeal for you. But just remember that we are all going through it too and we are all here to help and support each other.
Hope everything goes well with the biopsy today.
Best wishes x
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Let us know how you get on today, good luck.
Thank you for all the good wishes, they helped me this morning when nerves were getting the better of me. Today has been an ordeal, especially the fear that I wouldn't be able to go through with the procedure. The staff were so kind to me, even though initially I couldn't say my name or date of birth through terror. They talked to me and made sure I didn't see any of the implements and they managed to calm me down enough to go through with it. The anaesthesia was a bit painful and that process took twenty seconds, longer than I was expecting, but it wasn't massive agony and overall less of a physical ordeal than a trip to the dentist's. I whimpered quite a bit but didn't actually scream my head off! Once the anaesthesia kicked in there was no pain and the staff chatted to me about my life, which diverted me from my squeamishness about what was being done.
I'm really pleased to read that although the biopsy was a bit of an ordeal you managed to get through it with the support of the medical staff and that they weren't unkind to you as you'd feared.
Hope you have a nice, relaxing weekend.
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