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Thread: No Insurance, No Idea What To Do

  1. #1
    Newbie New User
    Join Date
    Sep 2011

    No Insurance, No Idea What To Do

    I do not currently have insurance but suspect I may have skin cancer. My husband is a small business owner and is barely making any money, he's now looking for a job so that he can get us health insurance but that takes 90 days to kick in and I've been told that the sooner you're diagnosed the better so I don't know what to do. Due to an annuity my husband makes too much to qualify for medicaid, and not enough for us to independently purchase insurance. Does anyone think it's a good idea to wait until my husband can get health insurance through an employer? Does it at all up my chances of it possibly being cancer since my father has had cancer in the past (he was exposed to Agent Orange in Vietnam) or would that be unrelated? I'm sorry if any of this sounds stupid, it's late at night here and I'm tired and worried out of my mind.

  2. #2
    Administrator Top User Kermica's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Hi there and welcome. I am sorry you find yourself in this worrisome situation. It is probably not a great idea to wait 90 days to have whatever is causing you alarm to be evaluated. Have you contacted the American Cancer Soicety to se if there are any fre screenings available where you live? You could also try your County Health Department to see what services are available there.

    I understand why you would want to wait, fiancially, of course. The risk is that, if whatever is happening were to be an aggresive form of Melanoma as opposed to a squamous cell or basal cell skin cancer you could be putting your life at risk by waiting for three months before having it seen and biopsied. I don't tell you that to make you afraid but rather to try and commnicate what could be at stake in your situation.

    I wish I could provide you with more definitive information but really can't. I would suggest that you visit the Melanoma and other skin cancers forum here and read some of those posts, it may provide some insight to you that could be helpful. I wish you good luck with this and sincerely hope that whatever is on your skin is just a benign mole.

    Good health,

    When the world says, "Give up," Hope whispers, "Try it one more time."
    ~Author Unknown

    Age 67
    Follicular lymphoma diagnosed August 08, Stage 1
    2 cycles (20 treatments each) localized radiation to tumor sites. Remission confirmed July 09
    Restaged to Stage 3 May 2010
    Recurrence confirmed May 2010 - Watch and Wait commenced - multiple scans with minimal progression.
    Cutaneous Squamous Cell Carcinoma diagnosed September 2012. Mohs surgical excision 09/2012. Successful, clean edges all around.
    Significant progression detected in PET scan - December 2012
    Biopsy to check for transformation 1/18/2013 - negative for that but full of lymphoma, of course.
    July 2013 - Rescan due to progression shows one tumor (among many) very suspect for transformation, another biopsy 8/12/13.
    August 2013 - No evidence of transformation, 6 courses of B+R commence 8/29 due to "extensive, systemic disease".
    February 2014 - Diagnostic PET scan states: Negative PET scan. Previous noted hypermetabolic cervical, axillary, iliac and inguinal lymphadenopathy has resolved. Doctor confirms full remission.
    June 2014 - started 2 year maintenance Rituxan, 1 infusion every 3 months. Doctor confirms lump under right arm are "suspicious" for recurrent disease, deferring scans for now.
    February 2015 - Doc and I agreed to stop R maintenance as it is depressing my immune system too much.
    June 2015 - Confirm that the beast is back by physical exam, will scan in August after esophageal issues settle down so we can get a clear view.
    August 2015 - physical exam in error, PET/CT shows no evidence of disease. Remission continues well into second year!
    December 2015 - Cardiologist tells me I have plaque buildup growing at an alarming rate. Stent or bypass down the road but not yet...
    March 2016 - new tumor below the jaw so remission is over. Back to active surveillance until treatment is needed.
    June 2016 - C/T scan indicates presence of multiple lesions in iliac chain.
    August 2016 - PET/CT shows multiple areas of lymphoma as expected plus new areas of concern in bowel.
    January 2017 - C/T scan shows significant progression in cervical and inguinal lymph chains, largest tumor is impacting hearing, measures 2.1x4.6 cm. 4 to 8 cycles of R-CVP, 1x3weeks to commence 2/6/17.
    April 2017 - Mid treatment scan shows about 1/3 reduction in multiple tumors. Also shows abdominal aortic aneurysm with peripheral thrombus. Cardiologist changed meds, spoke of need for surgical repair down the road.
    September 2017 - finished 10 rounds of R-CP, V was stopped due to neuropathy in feet. No further treatment planned at this time, at least 10 tumors can be felt which seem to be growing again.
    December 2017 - Biopsy of external iliac node with SUV of 13.1 shows no transformation! However, the FL grade is now 3A instead of Gr 1-2. Will start indefinite protocol using Copanlisib, one of the new targeted therapies. I remain hopeful.
    March 2018 - Copanlisib failed, treatment stopped 3/28. New plan is to go to Dana Farber on 4/16 for case review and treatment recommendation.

    May 2018 - did not qualify for clinical trials at Dana Farber. Tumors need to get larger to be considered. On consultation w/Dr. Armand at DF and my onc, have decided to take a break from cancer treatments. Will have a biopsy of the mass in my sinus discovered in scan at DF and to get the aneurysm repaired as it has developed a potentially catastrophic penetrating ulcer. Surgery scheduled for 7/12.

  3. #3
    I am trying to find out the same thing. I am doing some research on grants that might be helpful to those trying to pay medical bills as I have a friend who had basal cell cancer removed and can't pay his medical bills. I think I have found some leads on some grants, I will post whatever I find that I think is legitimate when I find it.
    Freckled Face - Julia White

  4. #4
    Newbie New User
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    i am also trying to find that same thing ........i shall post whatever i find . i think i am happy when i find this

  5. #5
    Read the insurance policy carefully. Sometimes if its been an extended time since you had insurance the wait is 6 mos.


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