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Man given six months to live after hairdresser pressured him to get dodgy mole checked out

Man given six months to live after hairdresser pressured him to get dodgy mole checked out

Nicholas was assured by two doctors that the mole was 'harmless'.

When Nicholas Smithson first noticed the black mole growing on the back of his neck in late 2021, he was told by his GP that he had nothing to worry about.

Even after it grew to the size of a pea and started to scab, two different doctors assured him that it was harmless. That's why, as far as the Queensland native was concerned, he had nothing to worry about

It wasn't until he went to see his hairdresser Vicki, nearly three months later, that she raised serious concerns about it and urged him to go and see a skin specialist. Now, the 38-year-old has approximately six months to live.

Nicko and his partner Hazel.

"She made me promise that I would go and have it looked at after the appointment", he told Tyla.

That same week, Nicko went to a skin clinic, though he was sure he was in the clear - after all, two doctors had told him so.

He recalled that the specialist he met with 'didn't even have to get her equipment out to realise it wasn't good.'

The expert was able to confirm that Nicko had a level four nodular melanoma - one of the most dangerous forms of skin cancer.

After a period of stunned silence, Nicko recalls turning to his partner Hazel and telling her: "I'm going to f***ing die. This is going to kill me."

The couple tried to remain optimistic as Nicko got booked in for a surgery to remove the mole and the nearest lymph node. But it wasn't long before another lump appeared along his jawline.

At first, it seemed like the lump might just have been a reaction from his neck surgery, so medics decided to leave it be.

"Now I know that that was a pretty big mistake", said Nicko.

The lump at the back of Nicko's neck was a nodular melanoma.

In June, when doctors did finally decide to run a test on the new lump, they confirmed it was cancer, which had now spread to both sides of his neck.

This prompted medics to send Nicko for a full body PET scan, which confirmed that his cancer had 'spread everywhere.'

He was put on two different types of therapy, which involved taking six immunotherapy tablets and nine chemotherapy tablets per day - but the medication only made Nicko feel worse, and even sent him to hospital.

"They were making me feel nauseous, tired, weak. I was just getting worse and worse the more I took them... I just couldn't function."

Nicko was taken off the tablets after they left him unable to function, and it wasn't long before his oncologist informed him he had just six months to live.

Nicko was told he only had six months to live.

"I mean, hearing that -I don't even know how to describe it. I just sank."

After Nicko was given the prognosis, his friends decided to set up a fundraiser to help him do everything he wants to do before he dies.

While he wasn't sold on the idea of a GoFundMe at first, he's now starting to come up with a bucket list of thrill-seeking activities including skydiving, driving across Australia in a campervan, scuba diving, canyon swinging, and visiting Japan, Dubai, and New Zealand.

While he sets out to get through his bucket list, Nicko is trying to raise awareness on the importance of getting moles checked by a skin specialist on a regular basis, even if you think it's harmless.

Nicko's friends are helping him to raise money to get though his bucket list.

"It's hard with melanomas because you can't always see them. Luckily with mine, it blistered so I got a bit of a warning, but most people don't even get a chance."

You can donate to Nicko's GoFundMe here.

Featured Image Credit: Supplied

Topics: Health, Real Life