I’ve always been a mole-y, freckly person. Add that to growing up in Florida and sunburns (despite my Mom’s insistence on sunscreen application) I’m considered high-risk for skin cancer. My Dad’s a pathologist and I’ve had squamous cell carcinoma and dysplastic nevi moles cut off in my teen years. My moles have been pretty quiet the past 10-12 years, but one rogue freckle on my face went crazy last week.
My lips got chapped last week and I started licking my lips. Then that little freckle/beauty mark above my lip got angry and swollen. I don’t know what came first, the swollen freckle or the chapped lips (chicken or the egg?). It doesn’t matter because in the middle of the night, by the glow of my iPad, I diagnosed myself with the help of Dr Google & some skin cancer blogs I found (i.e. Adventures with My Enemy Melanoma).
Instead of sitting around worrying for weeks on end, I called the dermatologist first thing in the morning. January 2013 would be their next available appointment. Rather than wait until 2013, I called my primary care physician and she got me in Tuesday morning. I’ve been going to her for 7 years (since I moved to Rhode Island) and love her. She rolled up next to me, pulled out a flashlight, looked at my lip and said “yeah, it’s swollen, let’s get you to a dermatologist ASAP.”
I went into “oh shit” mode and asked her if she thought it was melanoma. She assured me she thought it was probably just a basal cell carcinoma under the bad freckle. She worked her magic and got me an appointment with a new dermatologist next Tuesday, who will scrape off my “beauty mark gone bad “and send it off to pathology. I’m going to put it out of my mind until then because it won’t do me a bit of good thinking about the what-ifs. I’ll keep you posted, but in the mean time I hope this freckle chills out a little.
Thanks for any positive thoughts you can send my way, xo!