Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Bad News

Yesterday, my mom told me she has melanoma. Doctors have been treating her for a fungal infection that started as a white spot under her index finger nail over 3 and half years ago. They gave her antibiotics and creams that did nothing to heal her finger. After several years of treatment by several doctors, a dermatologist in Blairsville, Georgia biopsied the finger. The first biopsy came back as a fungal infection, but the medication did nothing to clear up the infection. He performed a second biopsy but took more tissue. It came back positive for melanoma with traces of a fungal infection.

This is a rare form of melanoma, not caused by exposure to the sun. It's often misdiagnosed due to the location under the nail. The site was not pigmented, which made it more difficult to diagnose. The time between her getting the cancer and the diagnosis has been dangerously long. The melanoma is an intermediate thickness, and she may loose most of her finger. We're praying the cancer hasn't moved into her lymph nodes. She has an appointment next week with a specialist to determine next steps.

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