Kate Mathews – 05/01/2009

Diagnosed 05/01/2009

My name is Kate Mathews. I am 20 years old. I am a senior in college and am an elementary education major. I found a suspicious mole on my lower right thigh, slightly above my knee. The spot was small, but caught my attention because it was half shaded in and half un-shaded. I scheduled a routine check up with my dermatologist and pointed out the mole. My doctor agreed that it did look funny and decided to do a biopsy. I received a phone call about a week later from my doctor. The biopsy had shown that the mole was cancer. I made an appointment to meet with the cancer specialist. She informed me that my cancer was an early stage two melanoma. Thankfully, it was caught early, and my doctor and I decided that surgery was the best treatment option. I had the surgery a few days later. I ended up with a 4-inch incision and 27 stitches. Thankfully, the post-surgery biopsy came back clear of cancer!

Since the diagnosis, I have taken many precautions to protect my skin from the sun. I wear sunscreen every day and hats during outside activities. I see my doctor every three months. I have had multiple biopsies since the initial cancer diagnosis, but fortunately, all have come back clear. I have become an advocate for proper sun protection!