Early diagnosis and important treatment for patients with melanoma

Treatment begins and ends in the dermatologist’s office for most patients with melanoma.

They do not need the array of advanced treatments discussed in the accompanying article. They do not consult medical or surgical oncologists.

“People are afraid of this word, melanoma, but if it is caught at an early stage, it can be cured,” the doctor said. Pamela Sakaloski, dermatologist at Watson Clinic.

Dr.  Pamela Sakaloski

In fact, very cured.

The five-year survival rate for localized melanoma that has not spread beyond the skin is up to 99 percent.

This is 30 percent different for people whose cancer has spread to distant parts of the body (lungs, liver or other areas of the skin). When the cancer has spread to nearby areas or lymph nodes, the rate is 68 percent.

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