Most people diagnosed with melanoma will have surgery after the mole has been removed. This surgery is known as wide local excision. To ensure that all melanoma cells are eliminated and to keep the melanoma from coming back.
- HOW IS THE TREATMENT PLANNED?
Your treatment will be planned by a group of specialists who will meet to discuss and agree upon the best possible treatment plan for you.
This multidisciplinary team will include:
- Medical oncologist
- Plastic surgeon
- Pathologists who advise on the type and extent of the cancer.
Other health professionals may be included, such as a palliative care doctor (who is specialized in controlling symptoms), a nutritionist, a physical therapist, and occupational therapists, and a psychologist.
- ADVANCED MELANOMA
When the melanoma has spread to other parts of the body, it is unlikely for there to be a cure, and the treatments administered are generally to reduce and control the cancer and to provide relief for symptoms. The main treatments for advanced melanoma are:
- Immunotherapy and targeted therapies to help control the melanoma or reduce its size.
- Chemotherapy, used in some cases.
- Radiotherapy, which helps control symptoms if the melanoma has spread into the brain, liver, bones, or skin.
- Surgery may be used to eliminate secondary tumors.
- Other treatments may be used specifically to treat nodules on the skin; these treatments include laser therapy, regional arterial perfusion, and infusion with chemotherapy.
These treatments can be given by themselves or in combination.
- ADVANTAGES AND DRAWBACKS OF THE TREATMENT
It is important to keep in mind the possible benefits and disadvantages of the treatment.
In many cases, surgery to remove the affected lymph nodes helps control local spreading and melanoma growth.
At the same time, however, surgery leaves scarring on the skin and on some occasions can cause lymphedema, or swelling in an arm, leg, or another part of the body depending on where the lymph nodes have been removed from.