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Above-the-neck melanoma more prone to metastases

Presented by
Dr Mohammed Al Abadie, Cross Hospital; Cannock Chase Hospital, United Kingdom
EADV 2019
Dividing melanomas according to their location above or below the neck, British researchers found a higher likelihood of above-the-neck tumours spreading.

Numbers for newly diagnosed malignant melanoma are mounting, with the highest prevalence in Caucasians [1]. In males, this type of cancer has currently the fastest increasing incidence rate in the United Kingdom. Worldwide, malignant melanoma is most common in New Zealand and Australia.

“In this study, we have reviewed new malignant melanoma diagnoses to see which ones are more likely to metastasise in terms of location,” said lead investigator Dr Mohammed Al Abadie (Cross Hospital; Cannock Chase Hospital, United Kingdom). A total of 45 patients were included in the study. The diagnosis of malignant melanoma had been established through biopsies. According to tumour location, 37 patients were assigned to a group with melanomas below the neck while 8 had above neck malignant melanomas. CT-scans were used for staging, and sentinel lymph node biopsies were offered to all patients with stages 2 or higher. In the group of below neck tumours, no distant metastases were identified and only 1 patient (2.7%) had a positive biopsy of the sentinel lymph node. Lymph node melanoma was found in both patients that agreed to sentinel lymph node biopsy in the above neck group. These 2 patients also had distant metastases.

    1. Al Abadie, et al. P0672, EADV 2019, 9-13 Oct, Madrid, Spain.

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