Leo's story: Not a wart
Leo Zeldenrust always knew he had a lot of moles but it was not until 2014 that he noticed one of them had started to look a bit different. His doctor thought it was a wart so she blitzed it with nitrogen and it was gone.
Two years later, Leo noticed the ‘wart’ on his right thigh was growing back but he was not really concerned. However, his builders tool bag was rubbing on it and it became annoying. So he went back to his doctor who was not convinced it was a melanoma but arranged a biopsy to be sure.
The outcome was a diagnosis of nodular melanoma.
The lesion grew very fast but it was not until two months later that Leo was finally able to be operated on to have the lump removed. On Christmas Day, Leo heard that that the surgery had been successful and the melanoma had been completely removed.
Leo said it was very challenging emotionally and physically to watch the lesion growing while he waited for surgery. “It has been a roller coaster ride as it was the first time I had been in hospital” he said. “Until then, I took my good health for granted.”
During this difficult time, Leo has had support from Melanoma New Zealand. He uses a special Facebook group for support and receives regular updates. “I am very grateful for their help.”