There are a variety of melanoma treatment options available. The goals of treatment are to remove all of the cancer, reduce the chance of recurrence, preserve healthy skin tissue, and minimize scarring after surgery. Dr. Alvarado, what else can you tell us about treatment options for melanoma?
Well, Dr. Mayzik, melanoma treatment typically depends on the stage of the cancer at the time of diagnosis.
In the earlier stages of melanoma, surgery is used to remove the primary tumor, where the cancer started, and determine if all the cancer cells have been removed. In more advanced cases, treatment may also include chemotherapy, radiation, immunotherapy, or targeted therapy, or some combination of these approaches.
In late-stage melanoma, the treatment often focuses on improving the patient’s quality of life and reducing pain. This is referred to as palliative care and is not designed to cure the cancer, but rather to relieve suffering.
If you’re diagnosed with melanoma, your healthcare provider will discuss treatment options with you. Together you can work to develop the best treatment or combination of treatments for your condition.