Current Oncology Reports

, Volume 14, Issue 5, pp 458–467 | Cite as

Screening and Prevention Measures for Melanoma: Is There a Survival Advantage?

  • Clara Curiel-LewandrowskiEmail author
  • Suephy C. Chen
  • Susan M. Swetter
  • On behalf of the Melanoma Prevention Working Group-Pigmented Skin Lesion Sub-Committee
Melanoma (K Margolin, Section Editor)


Controversy has emerged over the past decades regarding the value and impact of melanoma screening to detect early stage disease for improved prognosis. Those questioning the benefits of prevention efforts base their arguments on the absence of prospective, randomized studies demonstrating decreased melanoma mortality to justify the cost associated with screening and educational campaigns. For those in favor of melanoma screening, the lack of proven survival benefit is not a justification to abandon this approach, but rather a reflection of the lack of resources necessary to conduct a long-term trial. In 2009, the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF)report did not recommend routine primary care screening for the general population given the absence of evidence. However, since the USPSTF report, a series of new studies are available, which support the potential benefit of screening and have the potential to significantly impact current policies regarding skin cancer screening, particularly for melanoma.


Cutaneous melanoma Surveillance Survival Prevention Early detection 


Funding source

Janice and Alan Levin Endowed Chair in Cancer Research, University of Arizona Cancer Center.


C. Curiel-Lewandrowski: MelaSciences, Inc. (consulting), Medical Directions, Inc. (consulting), and DermSpectra, Inc. (principal); S. C. Chen: MelaSciences, Inc. (investigator); S. M. Swetter: none.


Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Clara Curiel-Lewandrowski
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Suephy C. Chen
    • 3
    • 4
  • Susan M. Swetter
    • 5
    • 6
  • On behalf of the Melanoma Prevention Working Group-Pigmented Skin Lesion Sub-Committee
  1. 1.The University of Arizona Cancer CenterTucsonUSA
  2. 2.Dermatology Section, Pigmented Lesion and Cutaneous Oncology ProgramUniversity of Arizona Cancer CenterTucsonUSA
  3. 3.Division of DermatologyAtlanta VA Medical CenterDecaturUSA
  4. 4.Department of Dermatology, Pigmented Lesion and Melanoma ProgramEmory UniversityAtlantaUSA
  5. 5.Dermatology Department, Pigmented Lesion and Melanoma ProgramStanford University Medical Center and Cancer Institute, VA Palo Alto Health Care SystemPalo AltoUSA
  6. 6.Stanford Dermatology/Cutaneous OncologyStanfordUSA

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