Frequent question: Who do I see about possible melanoma?

Who do I see if I think I have melanoma?

See a suspicious spot, see a dermatologist

If you find a spot on your skin that could be skin cancer, it’s time to see a dermatologist. Found early, skin cancer is highly treatable. Often a dermatologist can treat an early skin cancer by removing the cancer and a bit of normal-looking skin.

Can a family doctor diagnose melanoma?

Possibly. No trials have directly assessed detection of melanoma and other skin cancers by primary care providers. Training a group comprised largely of primary care physicians to perform skin cancer screening was associated with a 41% increase in skin cancer diagnoses but no change in melanoma mortality.

Do Dermatologists treat melanoma?

Melanoma is a major focus of dermatology training and practice, with dermatologists playing a central role in managing melanoma through primary prevention, secondary prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of thinner tumors.

When should you see a doctor for melanoma?

A new spot on your skin or a spot that’s changing in size, shape, or color may be a warning sign of melanoma. If you have any of these changes, have your skin checked by a doctor. The doctor will ask you questions about when the spot on your skin first showed up and if it has changed in size or the way it looks.

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Can you have stage 4 melanoma and not know it?

When stage 4 melanoma is diagnosed after a scan, there may be no symptoms at all, and it can be difficult to believe the cancer has spread. However, people with stage 4 melanoma may have a very wide range of symptoms. People who have melanoma diagnosed in the brain are told not to drive.

Can you have melanoma for years and not know?

How long can you have melanoma and not know it? It depends on the type of melanoma. For example, nodular melanoma grows rapidly over a matter of weeks, while a radial melanoma can slowly spread over the span of a decade. Like a cavity, a melanoma may grow for years before producing any significant symptoms.

Can a doctor tell if a mole is cancerous just by looking at it?

A Mole Biopsy

A visual check of your skin only finds moles that may be cancer. It can’t tell you for sure that you have it. The only way to diagnose the condition is with a test called a biopsy.

Does melanoma show up in blood work?

Blood tests aren’t used to diagnose melanoma, but some tests may be done before or during treatment, especially for more advanced melanomas. Doctors often test blood for levels of a substance called lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) before treatment.

How long does melanoma take to develop?

Melanoma can grow very quickly. It can become life-threatening in as little as six weeks and, if untreated, it can spread to other parts of the body. Melanoma can appear on skin not normally exposed to the sun.

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Can you live a long life with melanoma?

Survival for all stages of melanoma

almost all people (almost 100%) will survive their melanoma for 1 year or more after they are diagnosed. around 90 out of every 100 people (around 90%) will survive their melanoma for 5 years or more after diagnosis.

Can melanoma be completely cured?

Treatment can completely cure melanoma in many cases, especially when it has not spread extensively. However, melanoma can also recur. It is natural to have questions about the treatment, its side effects, and the chances of cancer recurring.

How do you feel when you have melanoma?

General symptoms

hard or swollen lymph nodes. hard lump on your skin. unexplained pain. feeling very tired or unwell.