Discussions By Condition: Medical Errors

Melanoma....or is it?

Posted In: Medical Errors 0 Replies
  • Posted By: AG6408
  • August 7, 2007
  • 05:22 PM

My husband recently had a mole removed from his arm and the biopsy reported that it was nodular malignant melanoma. The doctor instantly ordered CT scans and bone scans to determine if the cancer had spread and sent us to a surgeon to have the rest of the melanoma removed from his arm and a sentinal node biopsy. We met with the surgeon and he assured us that he treats many of these cases and the pathology was rarely incorrect. The night before surgery, our Dr called to tell us that she sought a 2nd pathology opinon and they dont' believe it's malignant melanoma. In fact they say it is completely benign. We postponed surgery until we can get a 3rd opinion from the University of Colorado. Is this contradiction between 2 labs looking at the exact same sample common? How does this happen? If the first lab is wrong, we spent $$$$ on tests that were unnessary and almost had surgery...not to mention the emotional rollarcoaster of this serious diagnosis. If the 2nd lab is wrong and we decide to take their opinion, my husband could be dead in 6 months. The 3rd opinion should help us make the decision but is this a common problem?:confused:

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