A member asked:

Can you get a melanoma in an area that is never exposed to the sun?

7 doctors weighed in across 3 answers
Dr. Michael Thompson answered

Specializes in Hematology and Oncology

Yes: Melanoma can occur in sun exposed areas. However, it can (and does) occur in areas where "the sun doesn't shine". Additionally, melanoma may be amelanotic (non-black) and difficult to diagnose visually until more advanced.

Answered 12/9/2014


Dr. Mike Bowman answered

Specializes in ENT and Head and Neck Surgery

Yes: Melanomas come in different varieties. Rarely they have no pigment, and they can also appear in places which get little or no sun exposure including mucosal surfaces inside the nose or throat, or on the soles of the feet. These unusual melanomas are thankfully rather rare. As with all skin cancers, if you have a lump or bump on the skin which is changing rapidly, make sure you get a checked out.

Answered 7/20/2012


Dr. Eric Whitman answered

Specializes in Surgical Oncology

Yes: Happens all the time. Although sun exposed areas are at greater risk for melanoma, that is not the only factor leading to melanoma, which can occur in areas with minimal if any sun exposure.

Answered 9/28/2016



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