Dermatology Questions? Ask an Online Dermatologist.
Hello - I am Dr Whelihan. You are correct in understanding that some melanoma's have no pigment and can be deceiving! This type is more likely seen in a fair-skinned individual. Any suspicious lesion should be seen by a dermatologist (who has the most trained eye!). Sometimes they can immediately dismiss your concern and tell you it is a benign mole but if they are concerned they will biopsy that (relatively painless) and send it to the lab for evaluation. You will get your information back in about 3 days or so. It is always better to be safe than sorry if you are concerned - especially with Melanoma. Do you know a dermatologist in your area?
That particular lesion does not look so worrisome to me - but I am glad you are seeing a derm who will put a small magnifier on it to see it up close! Generally lymphnodes with cancer are hard but NOT painful or tender. Generally nodes that are tender are inflammed due to a little infection moving through. Did you try hot moist compresses for the nodes?
It would be very uncommon for a melanoma to spread to your lymphnodes from region to region in the time frame you are talking about. Sometimes when we are worried about something - all of the other symptoms start appearing that go along with our concern. The most important thing is that you have a derm appt to look at your skin and concerns to give you a diagnosis. He/she can also palpate your nodules and if they are of concern will send you to a surgeon or specialized radiologist to biopsy the nodes. I know it is hard to not worry, but worrying will do nothing but make you not sleep! (and that is terrible for your immune system!) Keep your appointment and I hope that you are pleasantly surprised.
I did not open the links to the other photos - but things that don't change or change very slowly after 4-5 yrs do not worry me as much. Nonetheless. Begin with annual skin screenings and if needed, they will ask you to come 2x per year. Good luck!
Melanoma's do not begin with a pen stab - no worries! You can have as many biopsies as you need, however your insurance may limit how many are covered as part of a single visit - like 17 biopsies/destructions