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Melanoma - Metastatic News

With Skin Cancer Surgery, Insurance Matters

Posted 6 days ago by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Oct. 16, 2017 – Surgery is the main treatment for melanoma – a dangerous form of skin cancer – but a patient's insurance could affect whether or not that cancer is quickly removed, new research suggests. After reviewing thousands of melanoma cases, researchers at the University of North Carolina Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center reported that patients with Medicaid were more likely to face delays in scheduling their surgery than those with private insurance. Medicaid is the federally funded health insurance program for poor and needy people. "The primary treatment for most melanoma is surgical excision, which can be curative," said study author Dr. Ade Adamson, a clinical instructor in the UNC School of Medicine's department of dermatology. "These delays in care are concerning, particularly if they disproportionately affect those who might be the most vulnerable, such as ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Melanoma, Skin Cancer, Melanoma - Metastatic, Surgical Prophylaxis, History - Skin Cancer

Start Skin Cancer Prevention Early, Health Experts Say

Posted 12 days ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Oct. 10, 2017 – How to keep from developing skin cancer should be something all doctors discuss with the parents of their young, fair-skinned patients, suggests the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. Those conversations should begin much earlier than previously recommended – starting when a child is just 6 months old, according to new recommendations from the task force. "Providing behavioral counseling to children, their parents and young adults encourages sun-protective behaviors," said Karina Davidson, a U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) member. "These actions – such as using sunscreen, wearing sun-protective clothing and avoiding indoor tanning – can help prevent skin cancer later in life," Davidson explained in a USPSTF news release. She is vice dean at Columbia University Medical Center's departments of medicine, cardiology and psychiatry and director of ... Read more

Related support groups: Basal Cell Carcinoma, Sunburn, Melanoma, Skin Cancer, Sunscreen, Melanoma - Metastatic, Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Prevention of Sunburn, History - Skin Cancer, Merkel Cell Carcinoma, Deeptan, Coppertone

Does Healthy Skin Around Suspicious Moles Need Removal?

Posted 20 days ago by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Oct. 2, 2017 – If you're having a suspicious mole removed, the doctor should consider removing about 2 millimeters of healthy skin from around the mole. Doing so could avoid the need for a second surgery if the mole turns out to be cancerous, according to a new report. In the study, researchers removed about 150 suspicious moles from nearly 140 men and women. All of them had at least 2 millimeters (mm) of skin removed around the outside edges of the moles. Doctors call that healthy skin from around the mole "the margin." "Although the vast majority of suspicious-looking skin moles do not turn out to be cancerous melanomas, once a decision has been made to remove a mole, there should be a clearer standard margin," said senior study investigator Dr. David Polsky. He is a dermatologist and professor of dermatologic oncology at NYU Langone Health in New York City. Polsky noted that ... Read more

Related support groups: Basal Cell Carcinoma, Melanoma, Skin Cancer, Melanoma - Metastatic, Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Diagnosis and Investigation, Surgical Prophylaxis, Merkel Cell Carcinoma, History - Skin Cancer

Immune-Focused Drug, Opdivo, May Be New Weapon Against Advanced Melanoma

Posted 11 Sep 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Sept. 11, 2017 – New research suggests that Opdivo – a drug that works with the immune system to fight melanoma – is more effective than the current standard of care for patients who've had surgery to remove advanced tumors. The international study was funded by Opdivo's maker, Bristol-Myers Squibb, and included more than 900 patients with stage III and stage IV melanoma. Patients were treated at 130 medical centers across 25 countries. All underwent surgery for their cancer before they began treatment with either Opdivo (nivolumab) or Yervoy (ipilimumab), the drug that's the current standard of care. Both drugs are "immunotherapies," which work by boosting the immune system's ability to spot and destroy tumor cells. After a year of treatment, 71 percent of patients in the Opdivo group were alive without any recurrence of the disease, compared with 61 percent of those treated ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Melanoma, Skin Cancer, Opdivo, Melanoma - Metastatic

Moles Not Most Likely Spot for Melanomas

Posted 29 Aug 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Aug. 29, 2017 – Contrary to what you might think, moles are not the most likely place for a deadly melanoma to develop, a new analysis shows. In fact, a review of 38 previously published medical studies involving more than 20,000 melanomas showed that only 29 percent of the skin cancers started in moles patients already had, while 71 percent arose as new lesions on the skin. "Patients and physicians should be aware that skin without moles is more at risk than moles to develop a melanoma," said lead researcher Dr. Riccardo Pampena. He is with the dermatology and skin cancer unit at Arcispedale Santa Maria Nuova, Istituto di Ricovero e Cura a Carattere Scientifico at Reggio Emilia in Italy. Melanomas that arise on their own also tend to be more aggressive than melanomas associated with moles, suggesting the two types of malignancies might be different, Pampena added. Regardless, ... Read more

Related support groups: Basal Cell Carcinoma, Melanoma, Skin Cancer, Melanoma - Metastatic, Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Diagnosis and Investigation, Merkel Cell Carcinoma, History - Skin Cancer, Minor Skin Irritation, Minor Skin Conditions

How Safe and Effective Is Your Sunscreen?

Posted 11 Aug 2017 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Aug. 11, 2017 – It may be easier than ever to find sunscreen with all the right stuff, but be sure to read the label or you could still get burned. Most sunscreens sold at major U.S. retailers and their websites now offer broad-spectrum protection, are water-resistant and have an SPF (sun protection factor) of 30 or higher as the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) recommends, a new study found. But more than a third of sunscreens sold by several of the nation's largest retailers fell short. Forty-one percent of sunscreens did not meet all three recommendations, researchers from the University of Miami and University of Michigan reported. Tanning and bronzing products, in particular, tended to be lacking, the researchers said. In a follow-up to a 2014 study, the researchers checked more than 470 sunscreens available at big pharmacy websites to see if they met the AAD ... Read more

Related support groups: Basal Cell Carcinoma, Sunburn, Melanoma, Skin Cancer, Sunscreen, Melanoma - Metastatic, Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Prevention of Sunburn, History - Skin Cancer, Merkel Cell Carcinoma, Deeptan, Coppertone

Cancer Takes Financial Toll, Even With Insurance

Posted 10 Aug 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Aug. 10, 2017 – Many cancer patients in the United States are shocked by their out-of-pocket costs for care – with some spending one-third of their income on treatment, a new study finds. The study looked at the financial toll of cancer treatment on people who have health insurance. The vast majority in the study had private insurance or Medicare coverage; the rest were on Medicaid, the government insurance program for poor Americans. Despite that, the study found, patients typically spent nearly $600 a month on their treatment. Overall, 16 percent said they were facing "high or overwhelming financial distress." Those patients were spending nearly one-third of their monthly income on cancer care. Dr. Yousuf Zafar, the senior researcher on the study, used the term "financial toxicity." "Oncologists talk about the toxicities of cancer treatment. But there can also be a ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety and Stress, Cancer, Breast Cancer, Prostate Cancer, Lung Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Skin Cancer, Small Cell Lung Cancer, Melanoma - Metastatic, Stomach Cancer, Head and Neck Cancer, Testicular Cancer, Gastric Cancer, Choriocarcinoma

Melanoma Isn't the Only Serious Skin Cancer

Posted 27 Jul 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, July 27, 2017 – A type of skin cancer called squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) is increasingly common in the United States, so people need to be alert for signs of the disease, an expert says. About 700,000 new cases of this skin cancer are diagnosed in the United States each year, according to the American Academy of Dermatology. "While other skin cancers may be more lethal, they're less common than squamous cell carcinoma," said Dr. M. Laurin Council, an assistant professor of dermatology at Washington University in St. Louis. This type of cancer is highly treatable when detected early, "so it's important for people to know the signs of this disease and keep a close eye on their skin," Council added in a news release from the American Academy of Dermatology. Possible signs of squamous cell carcinoma include a pink or white bump; a rough, scaly patch; or a sore that won't heal, ... Read more

Related support groups: Sunburn, Melanoma, Skin Cancer, Sunscreen, Melanoma - Metastatic, Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Prevention of Sunburn, History - Skin Cancer, Coppertone, Deeptan

FDA Expands Approval of Yervoy (ipilimumab) to Include Pediatric Patients 12 Years and Older with Unresectable or Metastatic Melanoma

Posted 25 Jul 2017 by Drugs.com

PRINCETON, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE) July 24, 2017 --Bristol-Myers Squibb Company (NYSE:BMY) today announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has expanded the indication for Yervoy (ipilimumab) injection for intravenous use to now include the treatment of unresectable or metastatic melanoma in pediatric patients 12 years of age and older. Yervoy was evaluated in two trials of pediatric patients: a dose-finding study in 33 patients aged two to 21 years with relapsed or refractory solid tumors and an open-label, single-arm trial in 12 adolescents (ages ranging from 12 to 16 years) with previously treated or untreated, unresectable Stage 3 or 4 malignant melanoma. The overall safety profile of Yervoy in children and adolescents was consistent with the safety profile in adults, and similarities in disease between adult and pediatric patients 12 years and older allow for ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Melanoma, Skin Cancer, Melanoma - Metastatic, Yervoy, Ipilimumab

Smart Steps for Sun Protection

Posted 17 Jul 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, July 17, 2017 – You know you're supposed to slather on a high-SPF sunscreen before going out in the sun, but these five steps will help you double up on that protection. First, it's important to know that there are two types of harmful ultraviolet rays. UVA rays cause lasting skin damage and aging. UVB rays cause sunburn along with skin damage. Both can lead to skin cancer, so your sunscreen should protect against both. Look for the word "broad-spectrum" on the label. Next, you want to check out the ingredients. Sun protection products may contain chemical and/or physical sunscreens. Most products use chemical sunscreens, like oxybenzone, that absorb damaging UV rays. Zinc oxide and titanium dioxide are physical sunscreens. They sit on the skin and reflect and diffuse UV rays. They also work right away, unlike chemical sunscreens – it can take 30 minutes before they're ... Read more

Related support groups: Basal Cell Carcinoma, Sunburn, Melanoma, Skin Cancer, Sunscreen, Melanoma - Metastatic, Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Prevention of Sunburn, History - Skin Cancer, Merkel Cell Carcinoma, Deeptan, Coppertone

Parkinson's Disease and Melanoma May Occur Together, Study Finds

Posted 7 Jul 2017 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, July 7, 2017 – People with Parkinson's disease are about four times more likely to develop melanoma skin cancer, and conversely, people with melanoma have a fourfold higher risk of getting Parkinson's, researchers report. Although doctors have known about the connection between these diseases, they still don't know why having one increases the risk of the other. "Future research should focus on identifying common genes, immune responses and environmental exposures that may link these two diseases," said study first author Dr. Lauren Dalvin, who's with the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. "If we can pinpoint the cause of the association between Parkinson's disease and melanoma, we will be better able to counsel patients and families about their risk of developing one disease in the setting of the other," she said in a Mayo news release. Parkinson's disease is a progressive brain ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease, Melanoma, Melanoma - Metastatic, Parkinsonism, Parkinsonian Tremor, Parkinson's Disease Psychosis

Melanoma Biopsy Results Can Differ, Worrying Patients

Posted 29 Jun 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, June 29, 2017 – Joann Elmore is a doctor, so when her dermatologist said her skin biopsy indicated possible melanoma, she knew just what to do – get a follow-up biopsy to verify. But she got two polar-opposite diagnoses, leaving her anxious and uncertain. One pathologist declared it benign, while the other called it suspicious for invasive melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer. "It showed me what patients go through," said Elmore, a professor at the University of Washington School of Medicine. "It sort of made me realize that in much of what we do, there is an art and it is subjective." Pathologists can vary widely when assessing skin biopsies for melanoma, particularly when the case is not clear-cut, according to a study led by Elmore. When asked to repeatedly assess the same set of cases, pathologists often disagreed with one another and, sometimes, themselves. ... Read more

Related support groups: Melanoma, Melanoma - Metastatic, Diagnosis and Investigation, History - Skin Cancer

Can You Recognize the Signs of Skin Cancer?

Posted 28 Jun 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, June 28, 2017 – With skin cancer the most common type of cancer in the United States, you should learn to spot its early signs, a cancer doctor says. "Early detection is key. When detected early, most skin cancers may be effectively treated and are often curable," said Dr. Jeffrey Farma, a surgical oncologist at Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia. "Individuals play an important role in early detection," Farma said in a center news release. "By being familiar with your own skin markings, like moles, freckles and blemishes, you're likely to notice any changes." His recommendation: Have your skin checked yearly by a physician or dermatologist, and check your own skin for signs of skin cancer by using a mirror every month. Using the ABCDE rule of skin cancer can help identify potential problems, including the most deadly form of skin cancer, melanoma, he said. A for ... Read more

Related support groups: Basal Cell Carcinoma, Sunburn, Melanoma, Skin Cancer, Sunscreen, Melanoma - Metastatic, Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Prevention of Sunburn, History - Skin Cancer, Merkel Cell Carcinoma, Deeptan, Coppertone

Protect Your Skin From the Summer Sun

Posted 27 Jun 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, June 27, 2017 – Lots of people like that sun-kissed look on their skin, but experts caution against any tanning at all. "There's no such thing as a healthy tan. Tanning is a sign of skin damage," said Dr. Ross Levy, chief of dermatology at Northern Westchester Hospital in Mount Kisco, N.Y. He explained that "sunlight contains ultraviolet rays that trigger changes in the DNA of skin cells. Most of the time the body's immune system tracks down these mutations and repairs them, but occasionally the damage is missed and skin cancer takes hold. The more sun you are exposed to, the greater your risk." To protect your skin from the sun's damaging rays, wear long-sleeve shirts, pants and a wide-brimmed hat. At the pool or beach, wear a swim shirt or rash guard that is rated for sun protection. Limit your time outdoors when the sun is directly overhead and its rays are strongest, ... Read more

Related support groups: Basal Cell Carcinoma, Sunburn, Melanoma, Skin Cancer, Sunscreen, Melanoma - Metastatic, Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Prevention of Sunburn, History - Skin Cancer, Deeptan, Coppertone

A Baby's Skin No Match for the Sun

Posted 23 Jun 2017 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, June 23, 2017 – Want to help protect your children from skin cancer as they get older? Make sure they never get a serious sunburn in childhood. Just one blistering burn as a child or teen nearly doubles the risk of getting melanoma, according to the American Academy of Dermatology. "Sun protection is important at every stage of life, including infancy. Sun exposure is the most preventable risk factor for skin cancer, including melanoma," said pediatric dermatologist Sheila Fallon Friedlander. She's a professor of pediatrics and dermatology at the University of California, San Diego. "Keep sun-safety items near the front door, in your car and in your diaper bag so that you always have them ready when you're on the go," Fallon Friedlander recommended in an American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) news release. Other tips from Fallon Friedlander and the AAD include: Dress your baby ... Read more

Related support groups: Basal Cell Carcinoma, Sunburn, Melanoma, Skin Cancer, Sunscreen, Melanoma - Metastatic, Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Prevention of Sunburn, History - Skin Cancer, Deeptan, Coppertone

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