Melanoma – Skin

Melanoma Cancer

Melanoma Cancer is a less common but very deadly form of skin cancer that attacks pigment-containing cells in the skin called melanocytes. However, if caught early enough this type of cancer is almost always treatable. Damage to the DNA sequence causes the uncontrolled spread of mutated cells that form tumors that can spread to various parts of the body. This cancer is most commonly caused by overexposure to direct sunlight or time in a tanning bed. Fair-skinned, fair eyed people are at the greatest risk and anyone who sunburns easily. Metastatic (spreading) Melanoma often looks like a dark mole or begins from a mole already present on the skin.

Malignant and Metastatic Cancer – When cancer is spreading to the lymphatic system or other organs in the body it is called two things in medical terminology; malignant melanoma or metastatic melanoma. Both have the same negative connotation -the cancer is spreading.

Symptoms – If you are a fair-skinned person who enjoys time outdoors and exposed to the sun or in the tanning bed you should already be on the lookout for this type of cancer. Memorize the warning signs below using ABCDE.

Asymmetry – do the two halves of your mole’s match, or do they seem to be an uneven shape?

Border – is there evenly defined border to your mole or does it seem to have uneven edges?

Color – is the mole one color or several?

Diameter – is the mole larger than your pencil eraser tip? (They can still sometimes be this small when just starting)

Evolving – normal moles look the same over time while cancerous ones change in appearance.

Melanoma Skin Cancer – Melanoma is a less common form of skin cancer but they together represent approximately half of all cancer diagnoses in the United Stated

Ribbons – The awareness ribbon for melanoma and Skin Cancer is black

Cancer Horizons strives to gather information about melanoma and present it in plain and understandable terms. If you have an article or other content to refer to us or wish to contribute content please write to us.

Melanoma Cancer ribbon

Treating Advanced Melanoma

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Cancer Research UK scientists have discovered that acral melanomas — the rare type of skin cancer that caused reggae musician Bob Marley’s death — are genetically distinct from other more common types of skin cancer, according to a study published in the journal Pigment Cell & Melanoma Research.

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