Types of Melanoma

Types of Melanoma
image : cancercouncil.com.au

There are many types of cancer in the world and all of them is deadly. One of the deadliest cancer is called melanoma. It is a type of skin cancer. Melanoma develops in melanocytes that are the skin cells that produce melanin. Melanin is the pigment that gives color to your skin. Melanoma is often more severe than the other types of cancer. It is because of its potential to metastasize that leads to advance disease, even death.

Skin cancer is become one of the most common cancer. The data show that each year there are over 76 percent people died because of skin cancer. In 2015, about 73,870 melanoma cases will be diagnosed in USA, according to The American Cancer Society.

There some melanoma types you need to know in order to recognize what types of melanoma you might have right know. There are actually four types of common melanomas. It is like the four basic categories. Three of these melanomas occupy only the top layers of the skin, and sometime become invasive. The fourth melanoma is invasive from the very beginning. You must know that invasive melanomas are more crucial. Invasive melanomas can penetrate deeper into the skin, or even worse, they are spreading to other areas of body.

Here are four common types of melanomas:

  1. Superficial spreading melanoma

This melanoma is the most common one. It accounts for about 70% of all cases. It is most often seen in younger people. Usually, it starts with a benign mole. Then, it grows along the outer skin layer. After that, it gradually grows into deeper skin layers. This type of melanoma can be found anywhere on the body. The most common spot that this melanoma grows is on the trunk in men, the legs in women and for both women and men are on the upper back. Superficial spreading melanoma initially appears as a slightly raised discolored patch. It is asymmetrical in shape and has an irreggular borders. The patch color may very between brown, white, red, black, tan, or blue.


  1. Lentigo maligna

This Melanoma is also commonly found close to the outer skin layer for a while. Then, it will develop in deeper layers. It is also appears as slightly raised discolored patch. It is alsooften in color of brown, dark, or tan in color. It is most often seen in elderly people, especially women, who have a long story of sun-damaged skin. It is specifically often occurs in women’s faces who has light skin and older than 50 years old. On the face, it appears as large, flat lesions. The risk of spreading in lentigo maligna is not high, it is lower than the other melanoma types especially the superficial one.


  1. Acral Lentiginous melanoma

It has no much different with the superficial spreading melanoma. It spreads superficially before growing into deeper skin layers. However, this one is quite different because unlike the other melanoma, it is most often found on the feet soles and palms or underneath nail beds. It is usually appears as brown or black. It accounts for 2% to 8% of all cases, for fair-skinned people. For the dark-skinned ones, it accounts for up to 60% of melanomas. The cancerous skin patch has an avarage diameter of 3cm which makes it larger than others. This type of melanoma is become the most common melanoma in African-Americans and asians.


  1. Nadular melanoma

It is the second most common of melanoma. For about 15% to 30% of all cases are accounted. Usually, it develops faster than the superficial one, it is also more aggressive then others. At the time it is diagnosed, it is usually more invasive. Once it turns black, it is known to be cancer. It is often discolored in tan, blue, red, skin-tone, gray, or brown. Elderly people are the most affected with nadular melanoma. It often appears on their legs, trunk, arms, or scalp in men.


Those are the most common type of melanoma that is one of the deadliest skin cancer. All those types couldn’t be recognezid correctly if you do not recognize the symptoms of skin cancer itself. You should familiarize yourself with how it looks like. If necesseary, you need to examine your skin from head to toe every couple of months. You can use a mirror, the full-length one and the handy one to check the nose, scalp, palms, mouth, soles, back of ears, genital areas, and buttocks. Check every spot of your body, and pay attention to moles and previous skin cancer sites. If you see a suspicious growth moles, you have to call your dermatologist to check it out.

There are some general warning skin cancer signs you need to know. It includes:

– Any change in color, shape, size or texture of a mole or other skin growth.

– An Inflamed or open skin wound which do not heal for quiet long time.

– A small,spot with irregular that is dark or multicolored in color. It may bleed and form a scab

– The size of mole that is larger than a pencil eraser.

– A cluster of shiny or dark bumps


After knowing all of those types and signs, you need to know how the melanomas are treated. People with melanoma are often treated by a specialist team. It includes a dermatologist, medical and radiation oncologist, surgeon, and plastic surgeon. Some patient might want second opinion about the treatment plan and diagnosis. The doctor would do some preparation before the treatment, it includes asking few question relating to your readiness and the information you need to know. The doctor may give you surgery, biological therapy, chemotherapy, or radiation therapy. It is based on your situation, you may get the treatment combinations too. From this, let your doctor decide what is best for you, the doctor is the best person to assist you to choose the best treatment for the expected