Cancer Updates

A week ago Thursday Mar 2, 2017, I had a tiny skin lesion biopsied on my right index finger. Last Tuesday Mar 7, 2017 the results came back as Malignant Melanoma. While Malignant Melanoma is the #1 killer of all the different skin cancers, Sara and I felt very blessed and glad that we heeded the prompting to go in right away and our awesome family doctor, did not hesitate in doing the biopsy. 

I have since learned that:

“Melanoma accounts for less than one percent of skin cancer cases, but the vast majority of skin cancer deaths. The occurrence of malignant melanoma in fingers is particularly rare. Melanoma of the finger is a highly malignant tumor…”

Friday Mar 10, 2017, at the follow-up with the Dermatologist, we got our first bit of relieving news; although amputation is very common after confirmation of Malignant Melanoma on a finger, they decided to excise the area and attempt a skin graft. If the cancer had been deeper, and/or it had progressed, a graft would not be an option.

The next tender mercy, came when the Dermatologist asked about my job and learned that a good part of it involves typing. Because of the location of the planned excision is where the finger’s blood supply and nerves are, there is real risk to the function of the finger afterwards. The Dermatologist said there is only one doctor he would recommend for this type of surgery besides himself and if he was available, he would have him do it. To my surprise he then called the Hand Surgeon directly and put him on speaker phone. 

SIDE NOTE: Our Dermatologist was a very fun person in general and joked around for a bit before telling the hand surgeon about my finger. I am pretty sure the Hand Surgeon had no idea Sara and I were sitting there listening.

The Dermatologist told the Hand Surgeon if he could not get it done within 2 weeks he would need to do it himself.

While on speakerphone, they sent the relevant files via email and talked some more. Before we left the exam room, I was coordinating dates and times with the Hand Surgeon’s staff. My surgery date is for March 23. 

We are asking friends and family to pray for the following (subject to God’s plan and will for us):

  1. The Doctors get all the cancer
  2. The treatment plan continues without amputation 
  3. I maintain the use of my index finger
  4. Sara and the rest of the family are comforted

While this news could/should be disturbing and disruptive, I feel at peace and am grateful to a loving Heavenly Father and the comforter.

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