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Early Detection

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You can find out how to detect the disease before it has a chance to grow and spread and take steps to discover melanoma at an earlier stage when treatment is more likely to result in a cure.

 

This is important because when melanoma is found and treated early, the chances for long-term survival are excellent. As melanoma progresses, it becomes increasingly harder to treat and has a worse outcome. Five-year survival rates for patients with early stage (Stage I melanoma) are greater than 90% to 95%. (1) Overall, 85% of all diagnosed patients enjoy long term survival after simple tumor surgery. (2)

 

The first sign of melanoma is often a change in the size, shape, or color of an existing mole or the appearance of a new mole. Since the vast majority of primary melanomas are visible on the skin, there is a good chance of detecting the disease in its early stages.

 

 

References:
1. Balch CM, Buzaid AC, Soong S-J, et al. Final version of the American Joint Committee on Cancer Staging System for Cutaneous Melanoma. J Clin Oncol. 2001;19(16):3635-3648.Lotz
2. Lotze MT, Dallal RM, Kirkwood JM, Flickinger JC. Cutaneous Melanoma. In: DeVita VT, Rosenberg SA, Hellman S, eds. Principles and Practice of Oncology, 6thed. Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott; 2001.


IMPORTANT!

It's up to you to be on the lookout for melanoma in its earliest stage.

FAST FACTS

The first sign of melanoma is often a change in the size, shape, or color of an existing mole or the appearance of a new mole. Since the vast majority of primary melanomas are visible on the skin, there is a good chance of detecting the disease in its early stages.

 

You may detect melanoma at an early stage through:

  • Skin self-examination

  • Regular physical examinations, including a skin examination