My Father has Stage IV malignant Melanoma and for the past two years I have been coming to Melanoma International Foundation for help understanding the Doctor's statements, resources available, new ideas for treatments..etc
Melanoma International Foundation's community and its founder Catherine Poole have been amazing and I am really glad that I can go there for help and support. Thank you from the bottom of my heart
In April 2009 my sister suffered a large bleed on her brain. A tissue sample taken during evacuation of the blood indicated melanoma. She was advised by her oncologist that there was no effective treatment and that it was hopeless. We were devastated. We never had known anyone with melanoma; in fact we knew nothing about melanoma. I moved from Washington DC to Dallas where my sister lived so I could be with her . I assumed the role of advocate and desperately tried to educate myself and find help for my sister. Eventually I found Melanoma International. Thru their webinars I learned about treatment options, what tests to ask for, and what clinical trials were available. In their forums, I connected with other families and patients fighting this terrible disease. They reached out to me with information and encouragement. They helped me thru a terrible time. Unfortunately my sister died 9 months after her diagnosis. I regret that I did not know about Melanoma International sooner; we would have pursued a different course of treatment and perhaps my sister would have survived.
At age 60 I was diagnosed with a stage 2 melanoma on the back of my neck. It threw me into a depression and anxiety I had rarely experienced in my life. I was being passed from one physician to the other in a HMO system and couldn't seem to get control of what was happening to me. I reached out to my friends on the forum and they were there for me. I benefited greatly from them through my surgery and that horrible wait to get the final results. I still gain from the site even though I am now three months from my surgery. They played a significant role in my life through this crisis.
I found MIF soon after the "big C" came in to my life, during the time I was absolutely overwhelmed with the task of educating myself - and my family and friends - about the impact of melanoma on my life. From my first visit to their website I was impressed with the professional, level-headed information and knew I had found a trusted resource. I read everything and talked to everyone, however I always counted on returning to MIF for reliable and realistic information. When I needed to locate a new doctor after relocating across the country, their forum was invaluable. When I sink into self-doubt and fear starts to creep into my life again, I turn to MIF for clarification, inspiration and the feeling of support that can only come from fellow melanoma survivors. Recently I have been appreciative of being able to stay connected with the latest news about melanoma through Facebook. In short, I consider MIF to be the leader in melanoma support and education! Thank you!
Recently I was seeking urgent advice trying to understand and source treatment options for my brother who had Melanoma Stage 4. Sadly he died in January. At the time however, Catherine Poole was amazingly responsive and helpful. She was full of suggestions for treatments I could look into and the hospitals that offered them. I was most impressed and grateful to Catherine for helping me.
I am a man living with melanoma. This is the best place to get support and keep up with the very latest information. I am greatful for their efforts.
My father was diagnosed with Melanoma in early 2009 in China. As Melanoma is relatively rare disease in China, few doctors and pateint communities know about this disease not to mention the effective treatments. We felt very powerless, confused and helpless at the beginning. We turned to Melanoma International Foundation founder Katherine Poole for help after reading about her book about Melanoma in China. Katherine and her foundation community are very kind and helpful. They offer valuable information, provide guidance, even go to the great length to educate doctors in China about the pros and cons of various treatment options. Their help and online service really enpower the patients in China and around the world.
Melanoma Survivor-Stage 3. I have turned to MIF many times for information and I have found that their Web site is the most accurate and up to date. Their hosted bulletin board allows you to connect with other patients and caregivers while still providing accurate information.
This organization provides much needed support and informationthat otherwise would not be found. They are wonderful.
I was diagnosed with Stage IV melanoma last June in 2010. MIF was great in guiding me through the steps towards the right treatment and consultation with Doctors.
They also helped me financially with a small grant which help me pay for one of my trips to see my Oncologist.
MIF is a great source for information, support and guidance through the whole process.
I am a stage 4 melanoma patient who has lived for each update that I receive from this group. I have met several people here that I have never met but are a strong part of my team to beat this cancer. I have had the pleasure of meeting one that moved from ND and now lives in Florida. She has become as close to me as any sister I could ever have. All because of this site.
MIF is the site of choice for people diagnosed with melanoma and for their loved ones. The information is up to date,accurate and provides a balance of individual experiences with information on the latest research/treatments. It is here that I come for information that our oncologist cannot give us (I think he is concerned that every case is unique and his answers would only be speculative) and it is here that I am heartened and saddened by peoples experiences but I am constantly amazed at the resiliency of cancer sufferers. MIF is a community of care and personal expertise. It is our lifeline to discuss this terrible disease with people who share it, treat it, have been through it and who can intimately relate to the life changing course of this diagnosis.
MIF is just amazing.
Unbelievably helpful and they really help to keep melanoma patients and their loved ones positive and upbeat.
This website and Catherine and her counselors are just outstanding.
MIF was an absolute lifesaver when when I was diagnosed with melanoma in 2010. I received tremendous support on the boards, was able to educate myself with all of the current research and facts on the site and even spoke to and emailed with Catherine. I was blown away by her care and response. I continue to read the boards daily.
When I was diagnosed a year ago, I was told I had an early melanoma and was going to be fine. I always thought Melanoma had one outcome. No one gave me the background information I needed. I paniced after surfing the web. UNTIL I found MIF. They helped me put it in perspective and understand all the ins and outs of pathology reports, future risk and even what follow up I should receive. Most importantly, the forum helped me feel less alone when everyone else in my life kept saying "it's just skin cancer". It is so reassuring to know that my feelings were a normal part of the process and there are others out there going through the same thing. I stick around now to help reassure newly diagnosed patients since I was in their shoes and know how scary those first few weeeks can be. Knowledge is power and peace of mind, and Catherine and her staff provide that and much more!
Catherine is the GREATEST ! She took a personal interest in me--helped connect me with an expert oncologist-and generally held my hand(remotely) as I journeyed through the battle of melanoma. Believe the organization is one of the best for helping and guiding melanoma patients !
I started my fight against melanoma 5 years ago and the information and support I received form MIF has been outstanding. Catherine has spoken with me on several occasions and been a friend to me as well as given excellent advice.
I was diagnosted with Melanoma in 2006. After my surgery and subsequent healing I found Melanoma International. Catherine Poole and the others that I speak with on the Forum have been tremendously supportive and I always feel like I know what I'm going through. It's such a great place to just discuss your fears or your hopes. The section for new diagnosis is super to help guide you through this new and sometimes terrifying diagnosis. I try to recommend this site to anyone that has Melanoma or has a family member affected by Melanoma
I have advanced melanoma, and my wife first found MIF on the web. I soon started participating in one of the forums online, and found it extremely helpful, not only emotionally, but professionally. The director, Catherine Pool, called me and discussed my situation, offering phone contacts with leading experts in the field. I used them, and got in a very hopeful and beneficial clinical trial. Because she has a professional advisory board, she is able to give people excellent online advice as to where to seek hopeful treatment and clinical trials. That is perhaps a specialty, encouraging patients with advanced disease to get in hopeful trials, which is important for them, and for the development of good new treatments for the public. Education on sun damage is another emphasis.
Searching the web for info--I came across MIF and contacted them via E-mail--Catherine called me shortly after receiving my message and talked with me for quiet a while--she suggested a 2nd opinion and helped with transportation --what a blessing! This is a great organization !!