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How is nodular melanoma diagnosed?

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It’s a dangerous form of melanoma, or skin cancer, that grows quickly. A dermatologist will check your skin. If a spot or bump looks suspicious, you’ll get a biopsy. That’s when the doctor removes some or all of the growth and sends the tissue to a lab for testing.

A doctor called a pathologist will look at the tissue and cells beneath a microscope to check if it’s nodular melanoma. The pathologist can also measure the melanoma’s thickness, which helps determine the cancer’s “stage.” The thicker the melanoma, the more it has grown into the skin.

If the melanoma is more than 1 millimeter thick, you’ll probably get a biopsy of your lymph nodes. This may help doctors find out if the cancer has spread to other parts of your body.

From: What Is Nodular Melanoma? WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

Laura Korb Ferris, MD, PhD, associate professor of dermatology, University of Pittsburgh; director of clinical trials, University of Pittsburgh Department of Dermatology.

Skin Cancer Foundation: “Types of Melanoma.”

American Cancer Society: “What Is Melanoma Skin Cancer?”

Cleveland Clinic: “Melanoma.”

JAMA Dermatology : “The Contribution of Nodular Subtype to Melanoma Mortality in the United States, 1978 to 2007.”

JAMA Dermatology : “History, Clinical, and Dermoscopic Characteristics of Thin Nodular Melanoma.”

Journal of Medical Case Reports : “Nodular Melanoma Presenting With Rapid Progression and Widespread Metasases: A Case Report.”

American Cancer Society: “Treating Melanoma Skin Cancer.”

Reviewed by Stephanie S. Gardner on September 12, 2017

SOURCES:

Laura Korb Ferris, MD, PhD, associate professor of dermatology, University of Pittsburgh; director of clinical trials, University of Pittsburgh Department of Dermatology.

Skin Cancer Foundation: “Types of Melanoma.”

American Cancer Society: “What Is Melanoma Skin Cancer?”

Cleveland Clinic: “Melanoma.”

JAMA Dermatology : “The Contribution of Nodular Subtype to Melanoma Mortality in the United States, 1978 to 2007.”

JAMA Dermatology : “History, Clinical, and Dermoscopic Characteristics of Thin Nodular Melanoma.”

Journal of Medical Case Reports : “Nodular Melanoma Presenting With Rapid Progression and Widespread Metasases: A Case Report.”

American Cancer Society: “Treating Melanoma Skin Cancer.”

Reviewed by Stephanie S. Gardner on September 12, 2017

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How is nodular melanoma treated?

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