A woman discovers she has skin cancer after a chance encounter saved her life
A woman may have had her life saved by a stranger she met in the park who informed her that a mole she had was probably malignant.
Melissa Albin, a teacher who is also a mother of two, had taken her children to a playground on a hot day last year.
While he was there, a woman approached him and notified him that a mole on his arm was “alarming” and that he should get it checked out.
Once he did, Albin found out that it was malignant and if he had waited longer to get it checked out, his risk of death could have been greatly increased.
A dermatologist she ran into in a park told Melissa Albin (pictured) to get a mole on her arm checked out, then found it to be malignant
Dr. Philip Bernard (pictured) said that if Albin had let the mole go unchecked any longer, it would have reduced his chances of survival.
“Mom and teacher came before me,” Albin said, noting that her personal health had taken a backseat in her life to her career and role as a mother.
Albin said she was wearing a tank top and noticed another woman off to the side who had glanced at her several times.
Although she had noticed the woman, she wasn’t sure what had caught her attention and what to make of it.
So, the woman finally approached her and said something that ended up changing her life.
“He came up to me and said I’m really sorry if this is weird, but I want you to know that I’m a dermatologist and I’ve been looking at that mole on your arm and it’s really alarming to me,” Albin explained.
Bernard did a biopsy on Albin to remove the mole and he is now recovering at home.
Albin said her doctor had previously warned her about the mole and told her she should get it checked out.
However, with his health taking a backseat to other duties, Albin hadn’t gotten around to it yet.
After the chance encounter with the dermatologist, she booked an appointment at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio, where she was examined.
“I thought it looked very suspicious, so I did a biopsy and it turned out to be melanoma,” said Dr. Philip Bernard, a family medicine physician at the Cleveland Clinic.
Melanoma is a skin cancer that develops from skin cells that produce pigment. It is the most serious type of skin cancer.
According to the most recent data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 22 out of 100,000 Americans will get the condition each year, making it the sixth most prevalent type of cancer in the US.
Bernard said the mole was less than a millimeter deep and if it had reached that point there would be a “significant” decrease in its chance of survival.
While deaths from this condition are rare, it kills more than 7,000 people each year, according to data from cancer.net.
Bernard noted that Albin was lucky he came when he did, as letting the cancer progress further could have caused a serious problem.
“The depth of the mole was less than a millimeter, so if you had waited until it got to a millimeter, your survival would have been significantly lower,” he explained.
Albin said we were in shock after finding out he was suffering from cancer without even knowing it.
A biopsy was done to remove the mole and he is currently recovering well at home.
She has expressed her gratitude towards the stranger in the park who may have saved her life.