March 29, 2014 at 9:22 pm #5181
Hi everyone. I’m sharing my own Personal Survival Experiences and Lessons Learned.
Hopefully you guys will get something out of it!
In March 2012 I noticed a freckle that I had, that had previously been normal, had become discolored and had irregular borders, almost overnight. It was itching quite a bit too.
Instead of being stubborn, I went to the doctor. His immediate response was, “well, that’s not good” and decided it need to come off.
He decided to check every single other mole and freckle for signs of irregularity as well and found one more that needed to be removed.
At this point I wasn’t too scared until he said he couldn’t do the removal and started tossing around words like “six inch incision” and “anesthesia.”
Fast forward a month and I’m at the dermatologist who tells me that I have a skin condition that can cause any freckle or mole to become cancerous for no reason, with or without sun exposure, with no warning.
So I have both surgeries the same day, outpatient, without anesthesia (just local numbing, which really f*cking hurts!) I ended up with a few stitches in one incision and about 15 in the other (six inch incision, four inches deep.)
I’ve had two other surgeries since then for the same thing.
After biopsies of all of the irregular tissues, the doctors decided I didn’t have full-blown cancer because it hadn’t spread yet (we caught it very early.) I’m extremely grateful for this. The melanoma survival rates are basically none.
So what did I learn?
First, the SHTF hasn’t happened yet, so go to the doctor while you can to get minor and major stuff check out. Also, staying out of the freakin’ tanning bed should go without saying.
Second, learn how to spot irregular moles. ABCD (Asymmetry, Border, Color, Diameter) is a great rule to follow. Teach yourself while the internet is still up and running.
Third, this experience completely changed how I prep and what I stock in my medical kits. I have a full surgical kit because I know I’ll need it to remove another melanoma! No getting around that, so better stock up on surgical supplies while I can. I also learned the basics of surgery in case my mom (the doctor in my group) isn’t around.
Fourth, mental preparedness is vital in this kind of situation. When I began prepping, doing surgery on myself was not a concern. Now it is, and mental preparedness will be 80% of the job.
On a side note, I’ve been skin cancer free since early 2013. I believe the Lord has bigger plans for my life and have faith that I won’t be dying of melanoma at age 21.
I hope you guys will learn something from my experience. Glad I have a place to share!
HannahMarch 29, 2014 at 9:31 pm #5188
Thanks for sharing this with us Hannah! Mental preparedness is truly bigger part of the job.March 29, 2014 at 9:36 pm #5191
Great story and excellent advice! Thanks for sharing Hannah.March 29, 2014 at 10:04 pm #5200
THe AZ sun if notorious for skin cancer , I have had one removed .March 29, 2014 at 10:31 pm #5207
Another thing to consider packing in your BOB and stockpiling is sunscreen. It can literally be a lifesaver.
Tolik, have you spent much time in the sun? I never spent any and still don’t.March 29, 2014 at 10:45 pm #5210
If you live in the state ………….you cant avoid it , simple as that . 9 months out of the year is either hot , or hotter . But it doesnt take much to get a sunburn in the middle of summer at 117 degrees and low , low humidity ….20 min at the most if your not used to it , I do use sunscreen , it does help ….biggest thing is to remember to put it onMarch 29, 2014 at 10:49 pm #5212
I had no idea!
I’m really glad you wear sunscreen though!
I often forget to wear it, so in the summer I set an alarm on my phone to remind me.
HannahMarch 29, 2014 at 11:51 pm #5230
Having had a melanoma scare I know the feeling. I am scheduled to have another spot excised next week…
However the big cause is sunburn.. not sun exposure. There has been an overreaction to sun exposure.. which has caused problems with lack of vitamin D which is created by sun exposure. It’s a complex issue and I suggest you research it and don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater. You should get sun exposure.. but never burn.. and barely tan.
There are MANY diseases which will become a death sentence if modern medicine is gone. That was life.. in the old days… and may be again… ( still is in parts of the 3rd world).March 31, 2014 at 12:23 am #5639
You’re absolutely right about sun exposure vs sun burn. I’ve stocked up on a lot of Vitamin D supplements in my preps, something everyone should consider.
With prevention and early treatment I’m hoping melanoma wont be a death sentence in a total collapse, but progressed to full cancer it definitely will be.
Good luck with having that spot excised next week. I’ll pray for you!
HannahApril 29, 2014 at 4:42 am #11579
Hi, Not needing any sympathy…:-)… I delayed my surgery a bit… I really dislike being cut up… especially on the face…:-(… but I hardened up and had it done a couple of weeks ago. Just got the call from the nurse.. and she says it was a solar keritosis and not malignant.
I had read recently that if you have one melanoma , even just in-situ… you are more likely to have another. So I have to be more cautious than most. I also had a root canal done on a molar that had been capped.. but got infected. So I had another round of needles….which I don’t like either.. but I am getting all these issues out of the way… which has to be good … well before the SHTF.April 29, 2014 at 4:46 am #11581
Gypsy Wanderer HuskySurvivalist
Kiwi I hope your feeling better, nice to see you back.
Prepare for the unknown by studying how others in the past have coped with the unforeseeable and the unpredictable.
George S. PattonApril 29, 2014 at 6:23 am #11596
Welcome back Kiwi, glad it wasn’t malignant. Even if its unpleasant it is good to take care of things right away. (Reminds me that I should make an appointment with the dentist!)
I do this whenever something is wrong, in this case at least I tried my best but of course there are always diseases or injuries we can’t defeat. I hope you feel new power and motivation to live another 50 years or so!
Alea iacta est ("The die has been cast")April 29, 2014 at 9:16 am #11597
Have had skin cancer removed from my face. Part of being an outdoor person I suppose. Not fun to contemplate someone carving up your face I know. Sunscreen is dashed hard to keep on when you are sweating outdoors so I just wear a huge hat and loose long sleeve cotton flannel shirts and jeans. Yep, even in high summer. Took my clue from all the Mexican and Honduran farm workers here.
About Vitamin D. I am outdoors lots more than most people I know that basically don’t like nature! However, a couple of years ago I was having energy issues. Found myself having to ‘force’ myself to do stuff/rally to find energy. Finally realized it wasn’t because I was ‘older’ -something was wrong. A blood test revealed that my Vitamin D levels were basically about 3 – should be around 50. Had to take big doses of the stuff for about 6 weeks (noticeable improvement in a week) – and now take it daily. Apparently this ism ore common than most people realize.April 29, 2014 at 10:10 am #11616
Being in the African sun, we only use Coconut oil for sun screen. I use coconut oil for cooking and many other things. Big bottle in BOB http://wellnessmama.com/5734/101-uses-for-coconut-oil/May 3, 2014 at 1:12 am #12172
Hi Tweva.. we had the same experience as you with vitamin D. We now take lots of it too… and try and get sun exposure too. Sometimes we strip off when hanging the laundry.. to get full body exposure… one of the advantages of being remote rural.
But having been “bugged out” for many years I appreciate that by good luck we did not get so remote that we do not have access to Drs, schools and small towns with all the normal services. One of our nearby towns.. about 20 miles.. has a small hospital that really has excellent health care for most things. This is even more important now that we are older.
I too could bug out to a remote and difficult access part of my own farm… and from there go into dense forest without roads.
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