There are many treatment options available depending on the stage of melanoma.
The most common treatment for localised (early stage) melanoma is surgery, and in the majority of cases, this is the only treatment required.
More advanced cases of melanoma where the cancer has spread to other parts of the body may require treatments such as chemotherapy, radiotherapy, immunotherapy or targeted molecular therapy.
Surgery is the most common treatment for melanoma, however its purpose varies depending on how far the cancer has progressed.
For early stage melanoma, a biopsy may be all that’s required i.e. removal of the tumour by excising it . A wide local excision may also be required, where the skin surrounding the melanoma is removed to reduce the risk of recurrence of the melanoma at that site. This may be effective by preventing adjacent melanocytes from evolving into melanoma.
For later stage melanoma, surgery is used as a diagnostic tool to assess how far the cancer has spread. Patients may require more invasive surgery to remove lymph nodes.
- axillary dissection
- groin dissection
- neck dissection
- reconstructive surgery