Skin Cancer Treatment and melanoma
Skin Cancer treatments are varied. Melanoma is known as the most dangerous variety of skin cancer. It is a cancerous growth that occurs due to DNA damage in the skin- usually as a result of UV radiation from the sun or from visiting tanning beds.
Melanomas often resemble moles; in some cases, they develop from moles. The appearance of a melanoma can vary. They are often black or brown, but may also be pink, red, purple, blue, white, or skin-colored. It is important to receive skin cancer treatment for melanoma right away once it has been discovered.
How melanoma is different from other skin cancers
Melanoma is one of the less common types of skin cancer. Most skin cancers are basal cell carcinomas and squamous cell carcinomas. While these cancers are serious, they are also easily treated and rarely fatal.
Melanoma, on the other hand, can be deadly if left untreated. It is estimated that over 10,000 people each year in the US die as a result of melanoma. For this reason, skin cancer treatment for melanoma is more aggressive than other types of cancers.
Skin cancer treatment for melanoma
There are several different types of skin cancer treatments for melanoma. Your dermatologist may recommend one, or a combination. The treatment that is recommended will depend on the size, type, location, and stage of the melanoma.
Below are some of the more common treatments for melanoma, in order from lowest to highest severity:
- Imiquimod cream- a topical application to remove the affected skin
- Mohs surgery- a delicate surgery in which tissue is removed layer by layer to minimize the amount of damage to the skin
- Wide excision- the surgical removal of the melanoma and the skin around it. The sample will be tested to make sure that the margins are clear; if not, further excision may be required
- Lymph node biopsy or dissection- if the melanoma has spread, your doctor may test or remove the nearby lymph nodes
- Immunotherapy- stimulation of the immune system to recognize and destroy cancer cells more effectively
Your dermatologist is best suited to advise the type of skin cancer treatment that is most appropriate for your case of melanoma.
If you have been diagnosed with melanoma, suspect you may be suffering from melanoma, or have a family history of melanoma, you will want to get the best available skin cancer treatment. In the Charlotte NC area, consider contacting the experienced team at Metrolina Dermatology.
South Charlotte dermatologist and Fellowship trained Mohs surgeon Dr. Haberle and her team are well recognized as experts in all fields of dermatology, including medical, cosmetic, and surgical skin care.Skin cancer treatment is among the many services offered. Make your appointment today at Metrolina Dermatology and learn more about the most appropriate treatment for your melanoma.