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Overview of Melanoma

Melanoma is less common than some other types of skin cancer, but it is more likely to grow and spread. Melanoma occurs when skin cells called melanocytes begin to grow rapidly and abnormally. This type of skin cancer is most likely to spread to other areas of the body. Radial growth is when the melanoma spreads along the top layers of your skin. Vertical growth is when the skin cancer grows into the deeper layers of skin and spreads to other areas of the body.

Understanding the risk factors, signs and symptoms, and regular skin self-exams are important factors the prevention and early detection of skin cancer.

Diagnosis and Staging

When an area of the skin has been identified as concerning, there is a process used to diagnosing the skin condition for melanoma and subsequently staging if it is melanoma.

  • Medical history
  • Evaluation of risk factors
  • Physical exam
  • Skin biopsy
    • Shave
    • Punch
    • Excisional
    • Optical
    • Fine needle aspiration
    • Surgical lymph node
    • Sentinel lymph node
  • Imaging tests
  • Blood tests

Staging

After a melanoma diagnosis, the next step is to determine the cancer stage. The stage of a cancer describes how much cancer is in the body. Cancer staging also helps determine treatment options.

Opciones de tratamiento

El melanoma puede ser grave, pero sus probabilidades de una recuperación completa son excelentes si su cáncer de piel se detecta temprano, antes de que su melanoma se propague. Los dermatólogos y cirujanos dermatológicos de nuestro personal médico, utilizando las técnicas actuales de diagnóstico y tratamiento, ofrecen una gran esperanza para su diagnóstico de melanoma.

Su plan de tratamiento será determinado por su equipo de atención basado en la edad, el historial médico, el tipo y el estadio del melanoma y las preferencias personales. Las opciones pueden incluir:

  • Surgery
  • Disección de ganglios linfáticos
  • Excisión local amplia
  • Amputación
  • Terapia dirigida
  • Terapia de radiación
  • Inmunoterapia
  • Lymphedema Therapy
  • El manejo del dolor
  • Cuidado de heridas
  • Ensayos clínicos (cuando proceda)