Melanoma represents almost 100,000 cases of skin cancer diagnosed annually in the United States. While very curable, if caught early, it accounts for 75% of skin cancer related deaths. Its incidence appears to be increasing. The treatment of melanoma depends on the tumor depth and stage. The mainstay of melanoma treatment is early detection followed by a skin biopsy. An excisional biopsy will determine the depth of the melanoma and will guide Dr. Karimipour in the course of treatment. Many melanomas can be treated with a simple office surgery performed under local anesthesia. Thick and more advanced melanomas require more extensive surgery that must be performed in a hospital under general anesthesia. Dr. Karimipour is an expert in melanoma diagnosis, counseling, and treatment.
Excision for Melanoma
If caught early, an excision is used to remove the melanoma along with a margin of healthy skin around the melanoma. The width of the margin depends on the depth of the melanoma. The specimen is then sent to an outside dermatopathologist who has specialty training in reviewing melanoma specimens. If caught early, no further treatment is needed, however, patients will be educated on lifelong melanoma prevention techniques and the importance of self exams. Dr. Karimipour can assist with routine melanoma follow up if the patient does not have a dermatologist.