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Diseases » Melanoma » Summary
 

What is Melanoma?

What is Melanoma?

Melanoma is a common cancer of the skin. Melanoma, also known as malignant melanoma is the most deadly type of skin cancer ...more »

  • Melanoma: Melanoma is the most dangerous type of skin cancer. It is the leading cause of death from skin disease. It involves cells called melanocytes, which produce a skin pigment called melanin. Melanin is responsible for skin and hair color.
  • Melanoma: A malignant, usually aggressive tumor composed of atypical, neoplastic melanocytes that contain melanin. Most often, melanomas arise in the skin (cutaneous melanomas) and include the following histologic subtypes: superficial spreading melanoma, nodular melanoma, acral lentiginous melanoma, and lentigo maligna melanoma. Cutaneous melanomas may arise from acquired or congenital melanocytic or dysplastic nevi. Melanomas may also arise in other anatomic sites including the gastrointestinal system, eye, urinary tract, and reproductive system. Melanomas frequently metastasize to lymph nodes, liver, lungs, and brain. -- 2004
    Source - Diseases Database
  • Melanoma: any of several malignant neoplasms (usually of the skin) consisting of melanocytes.
    Source - WordNet 2.1

Melanoma: Introduction

Types of Melanoma:

Types of Melanoma:

  • Areas affected by melanoma:
    • Cutaneous melanoma - melanoma affecting the skin and moles.
    • Ocular melanoma - melanoma affecting the eyes.
    • Melanoma of the meninges, melanoma of digestive tract, melanoma of lymph nodes
  • Stage of melanoma:
    • Metastatic melanoma
    • Multiple melanoma
  • more types...»

Broader types of Melanoma:

How many people get Melanoma?

Incidence (annual) of Melanoma: 53,600 annual cases (SEER 2002 estimate: skin melanomas)
Incidence Rate of Melanoma: approx 1 in 5,074 or 0.02% or 53,600 people in USA [about data]
Lifetime risk of Melanoma: 1 in 35 women and 1 in 25 men will develop melanoma during their lifetime in Australia 2000 (AIHW and AACR, AIHW National Mortality Database, Australia’s Health 2004, AIHW)
Prevalance of Melanoma: In 1997, it was expected that about 40,300 Americans would be diagnosed with malignant melanoma, the most aggressive kind of skin cancer (Source: Genes and Disease by the National Center for Biotechnology)

Who gets Melanoma?

Profile for Melanoma: Melanomas are more common in people with lightly pigmented skin, and people who have had melanoma once have a high risk of developing new melanomas. (Source: Genes and Disease by the National Center for Biotechnology) ... The chance of developing melanoma increases with age, but this disease affects people of all age groups. Melanoma is one of the most common cancers in young adults. (Source: excerpt from What You Need To Know About Melanoma: NCI)

Race Profile for Melanoma: Melanoma is rare in black people and others with dark skin. (Source: excerpt from What You Need To Know About Melanoma: NCI)

How serious is Melanoma?

Prognosis of Melanoma: If caught early, melanoma can be cured. The risk of the cancer coming back increases with the depth of the tumor -- deeper tumors are more likely to come back. If the cancer has spread to lymph nodes, there is a greater chance that the melanoma will come back.
Complications of Melanoma: see complications of Melanoma
Average life years lost for Melanoma: 18.6 years (SEER)1
Deaths for Melanoma: 7,215 deaths reported in USA 1999 for skin melanoma (NVSR Sep 2001)

What causes Melanoma?

Causes of Melanoma: see causes of Melanoma
Risk factors for Melanoma: see risk factors for Melanoma

What are the symptoms of Melanoma?

Symptoms of Melanoma: see symptoms of Melanoma

Complications of Melanoma: see complications of Melanoma

Can anyone else get Melanoma?

Contagion of cancer: generally not; see details in contagion of cancer.
More information: see contagiousness of Melanoma
Inheritance: see inheritance of Melanoma

Melanoma: Testing

Diagnostic testing: see tests for Melanoma.

Misdiagnosis: see misdiagnosis and Melanoma.

How is it treated?

Doctors and Medical Specialists for Melanoma: Dermatologist, Oncologist, Surgeon, Plastic surgeon ; see also doctors and medical specialists for Melanoma.
Treatments for Melanoma: see treatments for Melanoma
Alternative treatments for Melanoma: see alternative treatments for Melanoma
Prevention of Melanoma: see prevention of Melanoma
Research for Melanoma: see research for Melanoma

Society issues for Melanoma


Hospitalization statistics for Melanoma: The following are statistics from various sources about hospitalizations and Melanoma:

  • 0.073% (9,325) of hospital consultant episodes were for malignant melanoma of skin in England 2002-03 (Hospital Episode Statistics, Department of Health, England, 2002-03)
  • 98% of hospital consultant episodes for malignant melanoma of skin required hospital admission in England 2002-03 (Hospital Episode Statistics, Department of Health, England, 2002-03)
  • 48% of hospital consultant episodes for malignant melanoma of skin were for men in England 2002-03 (Hospital Episode Statistics, Department of Health, England, 2002-03)
  • 52% of hospital consultant episodes for malignant melanoma of skin were for women in England 2002-03 (Hospital Episode Statistics, Department of Health, England, 2002-03)
  • 7% of hospital consultant episodes for malignant melanoma of skin required emergency hospital admission in England 2002-03 (Hospital Episode Statistics, Department of Health, England, 2002-03)
  • 5.7 days was the mean length of stay in hospitals for malignant melanoma of skin in England 2002-03 (Hospital Episode Statistics, Department of Health, England, 2002-03)
  • more statistics...»

Organs Affected by Melanoma:

Organs and body systems related to Melanoma include:

Name and Aliases of Melanoma

Main name of condition: Melanoma

Class of Condition for Melanoma: cancer

Other names or spellings for Melanoma:

Malignant melanoma, Skin cancer [melanoma]

Malignant melanoma Source - Diseases Database

Melanoma, Malignant melanoma
Source - WordNet 2.1

Melanoma: Related Conditions

Research the causes of these diseases that are similar to, or related to, Melanoma:



Footnotes:
1. SEER Cancer Statistics Review 1975-2000, National Cancer Institute (NCI)
 

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