Monday, December 01, 2008
My husband is facing surgery soon. He is being sent to Johns Hopkins in Baltimore because the surgery is urgent and risky. He has been dealing with skin cancer for over a year. In fact, we can look back at photos taken two years ago and see the red mark on his face that represented the beginning stage of it.
As early as 1.5 years ago, I was pestering him to have it looked at. He kept saying that it was only a scab. When he finally saw a dermatologist (12-20-07), the doctor didn't take a large enough biopsy and after about 6 weeks of waiting for the lab results, it had to be done all over again. At that point I went with him to the doctor. I asked him to go to someone else because I thought the doctor was not particularly competent. He refused. He even asked me to leave the room, because my questioning the doctor made him uncomfortable.
It was finally diagnosed as squamous cell cancer and a cream was prescribed. He used it for weeks to no avail. He had surgery on 6-4-08. He was in surgery so long that a nurse called me from the operating room to tell me that he was okay.
After the final follow-up visit a new lump began to grow right under the surgery site. Craig returned to the surgeon who said that it wasn't cancerous. Last week (the lump is now the size of a small crabapple) he finally went to a new dermatologist who said it is definitely cancerous. He also said that with all the time that has passed and the level of pain that Craig is having the cancer is most likely into the nerve, bone and/or muscle. It could even be in his brain, though I found that out from reading about it, not from my husband.
This appointment was last Wednesday afternoon so they couldn't reach anyone to schedule the surgery due to the holiday. We are waiting now to hear from the dermatologist about the surgery date.
I am scared and I am also fighting back the anger that I feel because Craig would not take care of this when he should. When I tried to advocate for him, he pushed me away. Even after surgery this summer, he stood outside working on our pool without a hat or sunscreen. Now we face this. I have kept quiet with him. I don't want to add to his stress, but I needed to voice my frustrations somewhere. Thanks for listening.