In this MD Newsline exclusive interview with dermatologist Dr. Edidiong Kaminska, we discuss Dr. Kaminska’s melanoma treatment strategy.
How do you manage melanoma?
Dr. Edidiong Kaminska:
“Melanoma management depends on the stage of the melanoma. Usually, at the dermatological level, after a biopsy when the diagnosis is confirmed, if it is a stage 1 melanoma or in situ, usually, it can be easily excised in the clinic with wide margins, and then we follow the patient approximately every 3 months.
If the melanoma has progressed further than stage 1 or in situ, we usually work with medical oncologists to fully evaluate patients to rule out metastasis or lymph node invasion. And that treatment can include surgical removal of the melanoma in addition to chemotherapeutic or immunomodulatory therapies if the melanoma has metastasized. PET scanning is also important for determining metastasis in some patients.
With regard to surgery, if the melanoma has progressed further than stage 1, then sentinel lymph node biopsies are often performed, and a surgical oncologist usually does that. So, melanoma management can be multidisciplinary depending on the stage of the melanoma.”
Responses have been condensed and lightly edited.