Friday, October 3, 2008

On a personal note... Skin Cancer Part II

(A beautiful Hudson Valley sunrise from my kitchen window)
Hi friends! I wanted to give you an update on the status of my skin cancer. Yesterday morning was the surgery to have the tumor in my neck removed. It was not a pleasant procedure, but I can now report the tumor is gone.

The doctor made a 4 1/2" incision just about on the center of my neck. The tumor was much larger than anticipated and it took over 75 stitches to close the area. I am very sore and the area is definitely tender. I am having some trouble raising and lowering my head, also moving my head from side to side. I think it will just take some time for the healing process to take place.

I need to tell you how grateful I am for the expertise of the doctors and staff at the surgery center. My aunt who was with me the whole time, was a real trooper! She cried for me and I have a feeling I will be creating some yummy "thank you" cupcakes when I am feeling better.

I am, again, encouraging you to check your body frequently for anything unusual and use the Body Mole Map and track any suspicious marks you find and have questions on. Do not be afraid to ask your doctor about your concerns; you will be so happy you did.

Find FREE SKIN CANCER SCREENINGS here through the American Academy of Dermatology. Additionally, check out the Skin Cancer Foundation Road to Healthy Skin Tour here.

Oil of Olay has a fabulous Skin Cancer Awareness Video here should you need more motivation to get checked out. I want to share my story with you so we can all have more days together to eat and share cupcakes! Please be healthy, stay happy and know I will continue to fight until I am cancer free!

Best!
(Wendy, tumor free!)

13 comments:

andy said...

Reading your blog it shows you don't need to be a sun worshipper to succumb to skin cancer. I hope your operation is a success and your recovery goes well. I have a niece who is 28 who had a tumour removed 3 years ago and is still under her oncologist for regular checks and a friend who passed away of Malignant Melanoma in May aged just 30. Neither were people who "chased" a tan yet both fell victim. It really is a vicious disease that can literally strike anyone.
Because of my experiences i now help a friend run a research fund for the Christie Cancer hospital in Manchester England, which is the largest single site cancer hospital in Europe, with the intention of developing a very promising clincal trial to find a cure for Malignant Melanoma. It's www.factor50.org.uk for people who want information on suncare and to donate.

Andy Worthington

CB said...

I read your first post about skin cancer and bought 3 melanoma bracelets (one for me, my MIL and my husband). My MIL struggles with skin cancer. She's going in for an acid face wash in 2 weeks per her dr's suggestion. Thanks for spreading more awareness about skin cancer with your blog. So glad to hear you are tumor free!
/Clara

The Cupcakery said...

Hi ANDY: I am so sorry to hear about your niece and your friend. Thank you for sharing their story with me and my readers. You are absolutely correct when you say skin cancer can strike anyone. You have turned your painful experiences into a very positive way and quite possibly life saving reach to share educational information for anyone seeking it.

I checked out the website link you left for me; after reading through it not only am I very touched, but I am reminded of how inportant it is to make skin cancer awareness information - any type - available because everyone is fighting a battle or knows someone who is going through it.

Thank you Andy for taking the time to read my story, checking out my website and sharing your with me. Best!

The Cupcakery said...

Hi CLARA: Thank you for caring. I hope your mother-in-law is feeling better in the coming weeks. An acid face wash. Oh my gosh, and I thought my procedure was a difficult one. Thank you also for supporting the Melanoma Bracelets; I thought they were so clever! I will keep your MIL in my prayers. Thanks for checking in! xoxo

ley said...

Thank you for providing awareness for skin cancer! I've known several people who have had skin cancer, and it's something that nobody really thinks about until they're faced with it. You hear about awareness for breast cancer and other cancers all the time, but this is one that needs just as much attention. Thank you!

Minou said...

glad you are ok. I don't think I would handle it as well.

The Monroe 6 said...

Wendy,
I am so glad to hear all is well.
I also am fair and protect my skin like crazy. I can not believe this happened.
Take it easy!!! :)
Amy

The Monroe 6 said...

By the way Wen,
What a GORGEOUS sunrise you captured!!!
Stunningly beautiful shot!
Toodles,
Amy

MJ said...

You are probably well on your way to recovery, so let me offer one tip passed on to me that I used in recovery from surgery in that general vicinity - once the incision is ok to put stuff on (besides antiseptic cream) - before the usual sunblock, I found a bullfrog waterproof quick sunblock stick (I think it's spf36) on the scar not only is extra protection that stays put and is easy to apply, it's got enough moisture that it helps the scar be more comfortable (I even put it on at night if the skin felt tight) - best in your recovery and hope you're doing better every day!!

Rosie said...

Thank you for spreading more awareness about skin cancer.

Wishing you all the very best!!

Rosie x

Handkerchief said...

I just happened upon your site and read of your skin cancer plight. My wife too has battled skin cancer and she has found that by using silicon band-aids (we buy them at CVS) the scar is greatly minimized. Best of luck to you, and I look forward to reading your blog in the future.

Wendy said...

Hi LEY - I am glad you took the time to read my blog. I agree with you, there is not much out there on skin cancer! I am doing my small part! Thanks for leaving me a comment! xoxo

MINOU - You would be surprised how well you could handle anything you are faced with! I am glad you checked in! xoxo

Hey AMY - I am constantly applying sunscreen. I guess you never know when you are going to be "tested."

Wendy said...

Hi MJ - Thanks for the tip! I will take all the tips I can. I have not heard of the Bullfrog product before. I will have to look for it. I am still uncomfortable from the healing process going on, I keep putting on baby petroleum jelly to keep the area moisturized. Take care! xoxo

Hi ROSIE - Every day is getting better and I thank you for your best wishes. xoxo

HANDKERCHIEF - I have not seen the silicone band-aids but I will look for them. I tried Mederma and had a severe reaction to it which is why I use the baby Vaseline. Thank you for your best wishes. :-)