Sunday, August 13, 2006

If You Have Something No One Else Has,

you may want to see your doctor. While this makes perfect sense, you'd be surprised at what people live with. In the last month I've seen two such examples. One was a person with a fist-sized hole in the middle of his chest, caused by a skin cancer that was never treated and had grown larger and larger over the years. The only person NOT concerned about the hole was the patient, who was in severe denial about the whole issue. I guess, in his defense, he had seen the lesion day after day, so maybe was less impressed by the whole thing, but good grief, man, you have a hole in your chest!

The other patient had a cauliflower-like cancer on the side of his face. Like, full-on cauliflower with a stalk and buds... Again, the patient was the least concerned about it and had postponed surgical removal time and time again. I'm sorry, but while there are some things that get better with time, a plant-like growth anywhere on the body will not go away by itself...

Moral of the story is, if you have something that no one else has, particularly if it is growing with time, or if it scares other people, don't mess around. PLEASE have it checked out by someone who might know what it is - in a timely fashion. It just might save your life.


Blogger Intelinurse2B said...

lol "or if it scares other people" maybe we could find a way to add that to the CAUTION cancer checklist...

good post

8:19 AM  
Anonymous dr peg said...

Great examples. Amazing how much we humans are capable of denying, isn't it?

10:07 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Denial is a big part of lung cancer. I have now met 3 people with "that cough that never goes away" that smokers call smoker's cough. That rolling awful cough accompanied by that raspy voice. All three had lung cancer diagnosed years after that cough appeared, after they were told repeatedly by people "that cough hasn't gone away...did you get that cough checked out?" I don't know that being diagnosed years earlier would have saved them, but it would have been a lot more fun for their families than the "he's got 3 months to live" part.

10:59 AM  
Blogger The Laundress said...

Well, it is weird how having the house on fire AND a hippotamus under the rug can be comfortably ignored by folks in denial.

I had to hop up and down and scream and yell to get a loved one to have lump the size of a grapefruit half looked at... and he had a second lump the size of an egg on his shoulder. Took comments from friends at his gym to finally get something done...

I have a colleague who lists to one side, with a steadily growing something on her shoulder... we all wonder and don't dare comment, since she is the "touchy" sort. But your post is making me wonder. Sometimes, perhaps a "My gawd, what are you thinking" kind of breaks the delusion that is well?

uh, rarely coughing, former smoker.

6:42 PM  
Blogger always learning said...

Hi Laundress,

funny that you mention the part about nagging a male loved one to get things checked out - both of these men's wives had been nagging them for a long time before they finally agreed to show up at the hospital. so keep on nagging - it may save his life!!

8:29 PM  

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