How Fast Can A Melanoma Grow?

Melanoma is a type of skin cancer that is caused by the overproduction of melanin, which is the pigment that gives your skin its color. While melanoma is not contagious, it is one of the most serious types of skin cancer.

This skin condition can quickly spread to other parts of your body if left untreated. This article will discuss the causes of melanoma, how fast it can grow, as well as the symptoms and treatment options for this deadly disease.

What is Melanoma?

Melanoma is a type of cancer that begins in melanocytes, the cells that produce the pigment melanin. This type of cancer is relatively rare, accounting for only 1% of all cases of cancer. However, melanoma is one of the most serious types of skin cancer. It can quickly spread to other parts of your body if left untreated.

Types of Melanoma

Cutaneous (Skin) Melanoma

The most common type of melanoma, cutaneous melanoma begins in the skin cells. This type of melanoma is usually identified by the appearance of black, brown, or tan spots on the skin.

Ocular (Eye) Melanoma

Ocular melanoma is the most serious form of melanoma, and is responsible for the majority of melanoma-related deaths. This type of melanoma begins in the cells of the eye, and can quickly spread to other parts of the body.

Mucosal Melanoma

Mucosal melanoma is a rare form of melanoma that begins in the mucous membranes, such as the lips, mouth, or nose. This type of melanoma is often diagnosed at a later stage. It is associated with a higher rate of mortality than other forms of melanoma.

Causes of Melanoma

Melanoma is not contagious and is caused by exposure to ultraviolet radiation from the sun or other sources, such as tanning beds. Melanoma can also develop from moles (skin lesions that are usually brown or black).

This type of cancer is also common to those who have an inherited tendency to develop melanoma and certain skin conditions.

Woman sweating under sunlight

Symptoms of Melanoma

It is important to be aware of the early warning signs of melanoma, as it can often grow and spread rapidly if left untreated.

The most common symptoms of melanoma include:

  • a new mole or growth on your skin that is dark, different from the other moles on your body, or is growing rapidly
  • a change in the size, shape, or color of an existing mole
  • itching, bleeding, or crusting of a mole
  • pain or swelling in a lymph node
  • any new symptoms, such as a lump or mass on your skin, fatigue, fever, night sweats, or changes in your bowel or bladder habits.

If you experience any of these symptoms, it is important to see a doctor right away.

Risk of Melanoma

Anyone can develop melanoma, but people with fair skin, freckles, and light hair are at higher risk. This type of cancer is also more common in men than women.

The risk of melanoma increases with age and is highest among those over the age of 60.

People who have a family history of melanoma, or who have certain skin conditions, are also at increased risk for developing this deadly disease.

Diagnosis of Melanoma

Melanoma is often diagnosed by the appearance of spots on the skin. These melanoma spots can be black, brown, or tan, and are often different from the other moles on your body. If you experience any changes in the appearance of your moles, it is important to see a doctor right away.

Medically, this condition is diagnosed through a biopsy, which is a procedure in which a sample of the tumor is removed for examination. This type of cancer can also be diagnosed with a blood test or imaging tests, such as a CT scan or MRI.

Specimen collection for biopsy

Further Melanoma Tests

If melanoma is diagnosed, your doctor will likely order additional tests such as a PET scan or a bone scan to determine the extent of cancer. Additional tests are also necessary to identify whether it has spread to other parts of your body. This is important for planning treatment.

How Fast Does Melanoma Spread?

Melanomas can grow quickly, and early detection is important for successful treatment. The five-year survival rate for people with melanoma is about 99% if the cancer is detected early. But it drops to about 15% if cancer has spread to other parts of the body.

Melanoma Mole Treatment

The treatment of melanoma depends on the stage of the disease. If early melanoma symptoms are detected, it is often treated with surgery to remove the tumor. In some cases, radiation therapy or chemotherapy may also be used.

If melanoma has spread to other parts of the body, chemotherapy or radiation therapy may be used to slow the progression of the disease.

Female patient preparing for radiation therapy

Can Melanoma Come Back?

Yes, melanoma can often come back after treatment. This is why it is important to have regular follow-up exams with your doctor, even after your cancer is treated.

How to Prevent Melanoma?

The best way to reduce your risk of developing melanoma is to protect your skin from the sun’s ultraviolet radiation. This can be done by using sunscreen, wearing a hat and sunglasses, and avoiding exposure to the sun during peak hours.

People with fair skin should also avoid tanning beds, as they are a major source of UV radiation.

It is also important to check your skin regularly for any changes. See a melanoma specialist if you notice anything unusual.

Visit Skin Cancer Dermatologists in Texas

If you are looking for more information on melanoma or would like to consult with a skin cancer specialist, please contact us at Skin Cancer Dermatologists in Texas. We offer a wide range of services to help you treat this deadly disease.

Skin Cancer Dermatologists is a specialized medical practice that is dedicated to the diagnosis and treatment of skin cancer.

Our team of experienced dermatologists offers a wide range of services to help patients fight melanoma and other skin cancers. We offer a range of treatments, including surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy. We also offer comprehensive follow-up care to help ensure the best possible outcome.

Skin Cancer Specialists Dermatology logo

Key Takeaways

In conclusion, melanoma is deadly cancer that can often grow and spread rapidly if left untreated. However, early detection is important for successful treatment.

There are many ways to reduce your risk of developing melanoma. That includes using sunscreen, wearing a hat and sunglasses and avoiding exposure to the sun during peak hours. It is also important to check your skin regularly for any changes and to see a doctor if you notice anything unusual.

Beyond Treatment: Your Guide to Life After Skin Cancer

As a skin cancer survivor, you've shown incredible strength. We're here to support you every step of the way, offering expert medical care, compassionate understanding, and personalized guidance. We hope this guide will empower you to navigate life after skin cancer....

read more

Skin Cancer Screening: What to Expect

Skin cancer is one of the most common types of cancer, with millions of cases diagnosed globally each year. While some skin cancers are easily treatable when detected early, others can be more aggressive and challenging to manage. Professional skin cancer screening...

read more
What are dark spots on skin and How Can You Treat Them?

What are dark spots on skin and How Can You Treat Them?

Do you have dark spots on your skin? If so, you’re not alone. Many people suffer from this condition, which can be caused by a variety of factors. In this blog post, we will discuss what causes dark spots on the skin and how you can treat them. We will also provide...

read more
Difference Between Eczema and Psoriasis

Difference Between Eczema and Psoriasis

There is actually a difference between eczema and psoriasis. Yet, many people are confused about the two conditions. In this blog post, we will discuss the differences between eczema and psoriasis, as well as their respective treatments. We will also explore whether...

read more
How to Get Rid of Plantar Warts in Most Effective Ways

How to Get Rid of Plantar Warts in Most Effective Ways

If you’ve been dealing with plantar warts, you know how frustrating they can be. Not only are they unsightly, but they can also be quite painful. In this blog post, we will discuss the most effective ways to get rid of plantar warts. We will cover both home treatment...

read more
How To Treat Dry And Cracked Hands

How To Treat Dry And Cracked Hands

Getting dry hands occasionally is common. It is not a serious condition, but it can be annoying and even painful when it starts to crack, or worse, peel. Dry hands and cracked skin are even more concerning when you try everything you can to get rid of the dryness but...

read more
How to Boost Immune System to Fight Psoriasis

How to Boost Immune System to Fight Psoriasis

Red, itchy, and flaky — psoriasis is an uncomfortable chronic autoimmune skin disease that causes a lot of complications. Because of the buildup of excess skin cells, psoriasis can also be painful. It’s not just a simple rash that you can ignore. In fact, it can lead...

read more
What is a Pustule: Symptoms, Prevention, and Treatment

What is a Pustule: Symptoms, Prevention, and Treatment

The skin deals with a lot of breakouts and distress coming from different types of conditions. One of the most common is the formation of a pustule, a small patch of fluid that commonly appears on the face. Pustules are typically harmless and can heal over time....

read more