How Melanoma is Treated

How is Melanoma Treated at Each Stage?

The treatment landscape for melanoma has changed over the last decade, especially for Stage III and Stage IV disease. In 2010, the options for Stage III and IV melanoma were limited and mostly ineffective. Today there are treatment options that are successful for many patients, and there are more in clinical trials. Treatment for melanoma depends on stage—how early the disease was diagnosed and whether the melanoma has spread—and the location of the cancer. However, other factors can also be important, such as overall health, the type of melanoma, if the melanoma has a gene mutation, and the goal of treatment.

Surgery is the first treatment step for the majority of melanomas, and often the only treatment necessary. In addition to surgery, and depending on your stage, treatment can include targeted therapies, immunotherapies, and clinical trials. For some patients, radiation and vaccines are an option.

Read general information about each of these types of treatment in this section.

Stages of Melanoma

Click below for treatments specific to each stage of melanoma.

Stage 0 (in situ)

Stage I

Stage II

Stage III

Stage IV