Malignant Melanoma

Malignant melanoma is the most aggressive of the three common skin cancers and has the potential to spread through blood and lymph vessels to other organs rapidly.  Most melanomas are related to sun exposure, and over 50% of these occur on the backs of men and the legs of women. However, melanoma can be found ANYWHERE on the body (scalp, groin, buttocks, bottoms of the feet, and between the toes).  Most often melanoma is an asymmetrical dark brown or black flat lesion with irregular borders, but 10% of them are pink or light colored.  The treatment for this type of skin cancer is multi-faceted and determined by pathology.  Over 8000 Americans die each year from melanoma so early detection is crucial in improving survival.