Mary Twylla Kemple

First post: 3/25/2016 Latest post: 4/5/2016
This has been a long process with lots of differing opinions and doctors involved so here's the short version up to now.  Current diagnosis is malignant spitzoid melanoma.


- spring 2014- bump on left wrist appeared. looked kind of like a wart, but irritated from being picked at.  we kept an eye on it but didn't think much of it.
- spring 2015- referred to local dermatologist.  bump removed in office, thought to be a pyogenic granuloma but came back from pathology as an irritated spitz nevus
- September 2015- area was red and raised, hard to tell if it was scar tissue or if the bump had returned.  returned to dermatologist who recommended a more complete excision by a plastic surgeon
- Oct 2015- excised by plastic surgeon in Medford with local anesthetic.  easy procedure and healing
- Nov 2015- pathology report came back (after being sent to Harvard for second opinion) saying that the growth had unknown malignant potential  
- Nov 2015- saw pediatric dermatologist at Doernbecher's/OHSU in Portland who recommended CGH (genetic test) to hopefully rule out melanoma
- Jan 2016- tissue sample was finally sent in for CGH test at UCSF (somehow ball was dropped and it was not followed through with after visit in November)
- Feb 2016- CGH test came back saying "...diagnosis is between pediatric melanoma on one hand and an ambiguous spitz tumor on the other, and I believe that melanoma represents the best overall classification." 
- Feb 2016- had followup appt at Doernbecher's with ped dermatologist.  He assured us that melanoma in pre-pubescent children behaves much differently (less virulent) than adult melanoma and because the spot on her wrist had not returned it was unlikely that any cancer cells were left.  So she was most likely cancer-free and wouldn't need any further treatment, though he would review the case with OHSU's melanoma tumor board 
- March 2016- case was reviewed and everyone agreed that doing a lymph node biopsy and dissection was unwarranted but they agreed that re-excising would give everyone peace of mind that there were no lingering cells.  There was a .6mm margin on the tissue that was removed in October which they thought was too narrow.
- March 2016- began working with an awesome integrative naturopath at Mederi Clinic in Ashland for cancer prevention and overall wellness support
- March 2016- met with hand surgeon at OHSU about reexcising.  Scheduled for April 1st.  Will be 30-60 min procedure, general anesthesia, day surgery.
- April 1, 2016- the area was reexcised successfully and easily.  The staff at Doernbecher's was awesome and MT was a happy patient.  
- April, 2016- pathology report came back clear- there were no remaining melanoma cells.  She has healed well, and we are all happily moving on (though continuing to follow the cancer prevention and wellness optimization protocol from the naturopath we're working with at Mederi.)
We are so grateful for the support we've gotten from all of you through this process!!

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