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University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center Uses a Unique Approach to Melanoma Treatment

We understand that melanoma treatment is challenging to both patients and their loved ones. Although melanoma is relatively uncommon, it is the deadliest form of skin cancer. According to the National Cancer Institute, an estimated 74,000 Americans will be diagnosed with melanoma this year.

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with melanoma, you probably have many questions regarding the treatment process. We know you are scared, and we can help.

National Expertise

UH Seidman Cancer Center is part of the National Cancer Institute-designated Case Comprehensive Cancer Center at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, which is one of an elite group of 53 comprehensive cancer hospitals nationwide. As a comprehensive cancer center, we can offer you the latest treatment options sooner than many other cancer hospitals.

Best Comprehensive Melanoma Treatment

We bring the expertise of a multidisciplinary team to each patient in our melanoma treatment clinic. Our patients see multiple specialists, all of whom work together to find the best solution possible. Our team includes:

  • Dermatologists
  • Dermatopathologists
  • Dietitians
  • Medical oncologists
  • Oncology nurses
  • Plastic surgeons
  • Radiation oncologists
  • Social workers
  • Surgical oncologists

Patients who have early stage melanoma may be cured with surgery alone, while patients with a more advanced disease will often need additional treatment such as chemotherapy or radiation. Since many of our patients require different services at the beginning and during the course of melanoma treatment, UH Seidman Cancer Center's team offers a comprehensive and effective approach to the diagnosis, treatment and management of this disease.

Treatment Options for Melanoma

UH Seidman Cancer Center specialists employ the following advanced techniques to identify and destroy skin cancers, including melanoma:

  • Digital MoleMap technology: enables early detection of melanoma
  • Photodynamic therapy: involves the use of photosensitive chemicals and controlled lasers
  • Sentinel lymph node biopsy: a procedure in which only the sentinel node is removed to determine whether the cancer has spread to the lymph nodes
  • Interferon therapy: interferon is a protein produced in your body to help fight disease; recent studies show that it can stop the growth and spread of cancer cells
  • Interleukin-2 (IL-2) immunotherapy: boosts the body's natural ability to fight threats to the immune system
  • Excisional surgery
  • Mohs micrographic surgery: surgery where a doctor removes skin growth by layers, examining each layer under the microscope, until no abnormal cells remain

We also offer access to the latest clinical trials that are advancing ways to treat and cure skin cancers, including melanoma.

Tumor Review Board

In addition to seeing an entire UH team for evaluation, every patient’s case is presented to a Tumor Review Board. The board provides a unique opportunity for experts from many specialties to consult on the case.

Through this collaborative process, UH Seidman Cancer Center offers a unique approach to care, leading our patients toward the best possible outcome.

Melanoma Clinical Trials

As part of our commitment to melanoma research, we provide many clinical research trials that allow us to offer treatment options to high-risk patients or those that have melanoma that cannot be removed by surgery. Melanoma clinical trials include:

  • Antibody Therapy for Melanoma: Studies one antibody with or without another antibody for melanoma that cannot be removed by surgery (stage 3 or 4 melanoma)
  • Cancer Drug Study for Melanoma: Studies a cancer drug used alone or with another cancer drug. It is for people with Stage 3 or 4 melanoma that cannot be removed by surgery.
  • A Drug Safety Study for Malignant Melanoma or Other Solid Tumors: Studies safe dose and side effects of a cancer drug in patients with malignant melanoma and other solid tumors.