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Doctor insights on: Melanoma Pathology

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Dr burned two moles off 6yr ago. No pathology. How would i know if there was a concern now re melanoma? What should I do now ?

Dr burned two moles off 6yr ago.  No pathology.   How would i know if there was a concern now re melanoma?   What should I do now ?

Ablated nevi: If you don't have any growths in the scars that resulted from the ablation, its really unlikely you have anything to worry about. Ablation of moles does carry the risk of a delay in diagnosis of skin cancer but if you truly had something there, i would expect it to have showed itself by now. You do need to see your doctor if any growths or pigmentation develop. ...Read more

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Dr. Mike Bowman
929 doctors shared insights

Skin Cancer (Definition)

A condition in which some element of your skin--which is one of the most complex organs in the body--degenerates into cancer. The three most common types of skin cancer are: basal cell, squamous cell, and melanoma which occur in that order and degree of aggressiveness. Although heredity plays a major role, sun exposure and tobacco use and ...Read more


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My pathology report states junctional and lentiginous melanocytic nevus, extending to the peripheral edge. Is this melanoma?.

My pathology report states junctional and lentiginous melanocytic nevus, extending to the peripheral edge.  Is this melanoma?.

Mole, not cancer: Here is a translation of your path report: Junctional- location as it relates to depth in the skin, the junction between epidermis and dermis. lentiginous- means flat dark spot, melanocytic- made up of pigment cells (melanocytes), nevus - a lesion that contains nevus cells a type of melanocyte, aka "mole". This is a benign spot that appears to have been completely removed. Not a malignancy. ...Read more

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Pathology said possible spitz nevus cells, surgery set in month. Should I find someone who can do it sooner? I've heard can be confused with melanoma.

Pathology said possible spitz nevus cells, surgery set in month. Should I find someone who can do it sooner? I've heard can be confused with melanoma.

Second look slides: It is always ok to ask for the slides of the original specimen to be reviewed by another pathologist / pathology team, if you are concerned about an accurate diagnosis. ...Read more

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Suspicious mole removed came back completely normal on pathology report. Is there a chance they could have missed a melanoma?

Unlikely: In the hands of a competent pathologist the diagnosis is probably accurate. You and your dermatologist could ask for a second opinion if there is concern. ...Read more

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Pathology moderate atypical dysplastic nevus, recommend further excision. Is this cancer/melanoma?

Pathology moderate atypical dysplastic nevus, recommend further excision. Is this cancer/melanoma?

Not yet: It may develop into a malignancy but is not yet. The borders may be incompletely excused, or te pathologist may feel that a wide enough clear margin has not been achieved. ...Read more

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How often do pathologists miss melanoma? I have a mole that grew back and although the pathology was normal, i still want the regrowth removed. But it would require excision which is a bit excessive.

How often do pathologists miss melanoma? I have a mole that grew back and although the pathology was normal, i still want the regrowth removed. But it would require excision which is a bit excessive.

Get 3rd opinion: Pigmented skin lesions are the most troublesome biopsies in pathology. The very fact of recurrence would make the original pathologist eager to have the glass slides seen by colleagues. Your physician can arrange this. And don't hesitate to have the lesion re-excised with a fair margin. A recurrent pigmented skin lesion probably looks nastier than any scar. Best wishes. ...Read more

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What is a melanoma?

What is a melanoma?

A type of skin cance: Melanoma is a type of skin cancer that arises from the pigmented cells (melanocytes) in the skin. In general, it is more malignant than the other two common skin cancer types (basal cell and squamous cell), but early melanoma has a good prognosis. Look online for the abcde for diagnosing melanoma. If you have a suspicious mole - have it checked out by a deramatologist. It could save your life! ...Read more

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How is melanoma diagnosed?

How is melanoma diagnosed?

Learn your ABCD's: Definitive diagnosis is made by biopsy. Melanomas are screened by the abcd's: a-asymmetry; b-irregular borders; c-different colors; d-diameber >6mm (size of pencil eraser). If you notice a mole with these characteristics, get it checked out asap. If you have a skin lesion which is growing, ulcerating, bleeding, or otherwise changing, get it seen as well for evaluation and possible biopsy. ...Read more

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What exactly is a melanoma?

Cancer of melanocyte: Melanoma is cancer of melanocytes. Melanocytes are cells that produce the dark pigment, melanin, which is responsible for the color of skin. These cells predominantly occur in skin, but are also found in other parts of the body, including the bowel and the eye (see uveal melanoma). Melanoma can originate in any part of the body that contains melanocytes. ...Read more

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Is melanoma hereditary? How?

Is melanoma hereditary? How?

IN A SENSE: A positive family history of melanoma is a risk factor. So is hair-blonde or red-color and eye-blue or green-color, which of course you inherit. The biggest risk factor, though, is sun exposure. ...Read more

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How often is melanoma 1-2 mm?

How often is melanoma 1-2 mm?

Quite common: Most melanomas in the US are diagnosed when they have thickness of 1mm to 3mm) are diagnosed in about 30% of patients and carry an intermediate prognosis with a risk of recurrence between 15-30%. ...Read more

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Which symptom did you have of melanoma?

Which symptom did you have of melanoma?

Use ABCDE RULE: It's best to see a dermatologist but a good rule of thumb is the abcd guidelines a=asymmetry of lesion b=border is irregular c=colors are multiple and not consistent d=diameter is greater than 6mm e=evolution of lesion with changes and enlargement. ...Read more

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How should you know if you have melanoma?

How should you know if you have melanoma?

Skin cancer : Most skin cancers are the result of excessive sun exposure/tanning. Genetics play a strong role too. Any skin lesion that is changing size, color, shape or an area that does not heal is suspicious for skin cancer and should be evaluated by a dermatologist. ...Read more

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Is there any therepies available for melanoma ?

Is there any therepies available for melanoma ?

Yes: In addition to the surgery mentioned, there are new drugs for melanoma. One, called ipilumimab, is not chemotherapy. It is an immunologic therapy that was approved for use in 2011. It is the first drug to improve survival in stage IV melanoma, and some patients are alive 5-6 years after diagnosis with stage IV melanoma while on the drug. Have hope! ...Read more

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How effective is Dabrafenib for treating melanoma?

Hopeful but not cure: Patients with a V600 BRAF mutation, approximately 40-60% of melanoma patients! and with metastatic/advanced disease may benefit from Debrafenib. However it is not a cure and it tend to prolong disease free survival rather and is typically used in combination with other treatments for optimal outcomes ...Read more

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What are the chances of survival for someone with melanoma?

What are the chances of survival for someone with melanoma?

Depends on stage: Not all cancers are alike, and neither are different melanomas. The survival from melanoma depends on the stage, which is based tumor thickness, ulceration, mitotic rate, lymph node involvement and presence of distant metastases. ...Read more

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Can surgery repair melanoma?

Hopefully: If the lesion is superficial, only excision of the skin site is needed. If it is deeper then removal of one or more of the lymph nodes in the area is usually recommended. If there is lymph node involvement, chemotherapyay help improve survival. Seek treatment at a center with experience in melanoma. ...Read more

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What is "melanoma lymphoma"?

What is "melanoma lymphoma"?

I don't know: Melanoma and lymphoma are two separate tumors. Maybe you are seeing a typo or potentially a differential diagnosis and the confirmed diagnosis isn't clear. I would ask your md what it means. ...Read more

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How can you prevent melanoma?

How can you prevent melanoma?

Sun protection!: Taking care of your skin is key to long term health and prevention of melanoma and other skin cancers. Regular and repeated use of sunblock as well as wide brim hats and sun rated long sleeve shirts and pants all will protect your skin and keep you looking younger as well. If you have a strong family history of melanoma or skin cancer, have a dermatologist give you a thorough exam. ...Read more

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Dr. Amy Deeken
357 doctors shared insights

Pathology (Definition)

Pathology is essentially the study of disease. Specialist trained to help diagnose disease (laboratory medicine) are known as pathologists. Pathologist have completed medical school and completed a ...Read more


Dr. Travis Kidner
2,607 doctors shared insights

Melanoma (Definition)

Cancer of the melanocyte cells. Melanocyte cells determine the color of your skin. Although these cells are primarily found in your skin, they can also be found in the bowel ...Read more