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Follow-up care of melanoma patients should be tailored to an individual patient’s needs. Patients with Stages I, II, and III disease should receive lifelong dermatologic screening since these patients are at higher risk for developing another primary skin cancer, either melanoma or other type, such as basal cell or squamous cell carcinomas. Your care team will discuss how often you should be screened for skin cancers.
For those with in situ melanoma or very thin melanomas with a low risk of recurrence, follow-up only with a dermatologist or primary care provider for skin evaluations may be appropriate. For those with intermediate or thick melanomas, or melanomas that have spread to lymph nodes, follow-up evaluation with a medical and/or surgical oncologist is generally recommended. It is important to note that most melanoma recurrences are detected by patients between exams. We encourage melanoma patients to report new or unusual changes.
For more information regarding patient treatment guidelines and follow-up care, please visit the National Comprehensive Cancer Network website.