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Melanoma and Pregnancy

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Melanoma and Pregnancy

Posted By
jjk17
4/8/2020 2:08pm
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Replies: 5

Hello!!

I know this subject has been brought up before, but was just seeking for some more insight.

I was Stage IIIb . Had tumor removed and couple of lymph nodes that it had spread to. As of today I have been cancer free for 2 1/2 yrs now. My husband and I are talking about pregnancy again and it scares me. I had a successful first pregnancy, my spot came up about 1 year after.

We have been told all the risks ect. Just looking for some advice.....Is it worth it? I feel so uneasy about this and it's really taking a toll on my husband.....

Any advice is greatly appreciated.

Hey there, I cannot give you an advise but I can tell you my story short. Iwas diagnosed IIIA in 2017. 2018 I got pregnant and stopped interferon. My daughter was born in December 2018, totally healthy. In February the first scans after pregnancy showed a solitary lung tumor. It was melanoma. It was surgically removed and since then no recurrence but I have to live in fear with a Stage 4 diagnosis. I will not have another baby but I wouldn't have it any other way. I love my daughter more than anything and if I could turn back time, I would do it the same way. It's a very tough decision and it is just my experience. But I thought you should consider this.

Hugs from Germany. :)

AshleyS - (4/9/2020 - 5:50pm)

Hi JJK,

Here is my story....

When my first child was nine months old, I was diagnosed as stage 1B. The lymph node biopsy and PET came back clear. It took us three years and multiple miscarriages to have our first, so we were excited to try again. All of my doctors said we were fine to have another. When I was pregnant with my second, I found a lump in my groin at 20 weeks. It was advanced-staged melanoma. I chose not to undergo any treatment, but did have a complete lymph node dissection. We induced at 37 weeks and my son was born healthy. Seven days later I found out I had tumors in my liver, lungs, spine, and lots of subcutaneous spots throughout my body. I failed chemotherapy. I moved with my husband, two-year-old daughter, and two-month-old son from North Dakota to Texas to enter a medical trial at MD Anderson. The trial was hell, but I was lucky to be a complete responder to Ipi-Nivo. I have been cancer-free for nearly five years and off meds for three. My son will enter kindergarten in the fall and my daughter will turn eight.

My doctor at MD Anderson (one of my favorite humans) agrees that my pregnancy influenced my melanoma. She advised me to have my tubes tied. It was a tough decision because I always thought we would have more children. However, I want to be a part of my children’s lives, so I did have the surgery.

I will say that had I not had children, I would try to become pregnant knowing the risks. However, I’d find doctors willing to take precautions. I would see a melanoma specialist who would be willing to work with an obstetrician. Melanoma is one of three types of cancer (leukemia/lymphoma) that can spread from the mother to the baby. Because of this, I would have weekly ultrasounds to check the placenta for any abnormalities.

Good luck making your decision. It’s very personal and very difficult.

Hugs,

Ashley

jjk17 - (4/10/2020 - 1:44pm)

First off...THANK YOU EVERYONE for your responses. It means more than you will ever know.

This is a hard decision to make. I want to have another baby but at the same time, I do not want to have that worry of something possibly coming up. I just dont know if I want to go through the infusions again, health issues ect.

I want to be around for my husband and our 4yr old. I hate these cards that I was dealt!

LRS88 - (4/13/2020 - 7:13am)

I just wanted to chime in and let you know I feel for you!
I hope you come to a decision that you are comfortable with.
I have asked this same question many times to numerous health professionals and unfortunately no one really gives me an answer I feel confident in.
Best wishes to you and your family!