, Volume 21, Issue 7, pp 2124-2126
Date: 14 Apr 2014

Should Patients Being Considered for Surgical Management in Melanoma Centers Have Their Histology Reviewed by Specialized Pathologists?

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The outlook for patients with cutaneous melanoma has substantially improved. This is attributable to a variety of factors, including enhanced patient and professional awareness of the clinical events and changes in appearance that mark the early evolution of cutaneous melanoma. This facilitates early clinical diagnosis at a time when local surgery can be curative. Increasingly, logical approaches to the extent of surgical clearance of primary tumors and new approaches to the management of the regional lymph nodes have also been contributory.1,2 Primary care physicians and general dermatologists, while willing to undertake excision of nonmelanocytic and clinically benign melanocytic lesions, are less often willing to undertake definitive excision of diagnostically established primary melanomas, and are seldom prepared to perform lymphatic mapping and sentinel node biopsy. This has led to the evolution of highly specialized “melanoma surgeons” who work in complex multidisciplinary units ...