A 35-year-old woman is seen at your office for a rapidly changing pigmented lesion on her right upper hip. Although she tans easily, she has had extensive sun exposure surfing and lounging on the beach. The lesion is located in an area that is usually sun-protected, below her bathing suit line. The patient is very worried about melanoma.
1. What additional history should you elicit from this patient?
2. What characteristics of the lesion found on physical examination would suggest malignant melanoma?
3. What are the primary lesions that you might find in malignant melanoma?
4. What are the secondary lesions that you might find in malignant melanoma?
5. Should the lesion be biopsied for melanoma, and if so, what type of biopsy should be done?
6. If you determine that biopsy is not mandatory at this time, what should you tell the patient?
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Complete Guide to Preventing Skin Cancer. We all know enough to fear the name, just as we do the words tumor and malignant. But apart from that, most of us know very little at all about cancer, especially skin cancer in itself. If I were to ask you to tell me about skin cancer right now, what would you say? Apart from the fact that its a cancer on the skin, that is.