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    Metastatic Melanoma - Topic Overview

    When melanoma spreads (metastasizes), it usually spreads first into nearby lymph nodes. It can also spread through the bloodstream. Distant metastases of melanoma typically are found in the skin, liver, lungs, bone, and brain.

    If the melanoma is on a leg or arm, metastases usually are first found higher up on that leg or arm. Unusual sites for metastases include the eye.

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    What is prevention?

    Cancer prevention is action taken to lower the chance of getting cancer. By preventing cancer, the number of new cases of cancer in a group or population is lowered. Hopefully, this will lower the number of deaths caused by cancer. To prevent new cancers from starting, scientists look at risk factors and protective factors. Anything that increases your chance of developing cancer is called a cancer risk factor; anything that decreases your chance of developing cancer is called a cancer protective...

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    You may notice changes in a new or existing mole, such as:

    • An open sore (ulceration) or infection.
    • Bleeding for no reason.
    • Itching, tenderness, or pain.
    • A change in color.
    • A change in the thickness, such as going from flat to raised or raised to flat.

    But symptoms may be vague and include:

    When melanoma has spread only to nearby tissues or lymph nodes, treatments such as immunotherapy can sometimes work. But after melanoma has spread to other places in the body, cure is very rare. In these cases, treatment to manage symptoms may help a person live longer.

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: November 14, 2014
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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