Melanoma symptoms are those signs which can be easily noticed on our body, like some changes in the color and shapes of the moles on our body. Before now, we published articles on other skin diseases like Acne, Eczema and more, but this particular article will centre on Melanoma symptoms and how to get rid of this cancer.
These melanoma symptoms should be a source of concern to us, and some of these melanoma symptoms have been outlined below.
Melanoma is one of the most dangerous forms of skin cancer. It develops in the cells that produce melanin ( the pigment that gives the skin its colour). There occur when an unrepaired DNA causes damage to cells of the skin. Melanoma skin cancer is not the most common forms of skin cancer, but it causes the most deaths
Melanoma is mostly caused by ultraviolet radiation from the sun or tanning beds. There trigger certain genetic defects which cause the cells of the skin to multiply very fast, causing malignant melanoma. The melanomas are sometimes black or brown, but can also be pink, red, blue, purple or white.
Melanoma cancer if found early and treated properly shows a possibility of them getting cured. But when it is not found in time and treated, the melanoma skin cancer can advance and spread to other parts of the body, where treating it can become very hard.
Melanomas are mostly caused by ultraviolet radiations d=from the sun and also tanning beds. Other factors which are not known now can also cause melanoma.
Here are some of the melanoma symptoms that may occur in your body. When you notice these signs, you should be concerned and see a doctor.
- Moles: when the moles looks unusual either in colour, size. Some moles are found at birth or can appear during childhood or young adulthood. Any new mole that develops later in life should be checked out by your doctor.
There are also some possible signs and symptoms of melanoma. Using the ABCDE rule, you should look out for the following signs and changes in the moles you’ve got.
- A which is for Asymmetry: This is when one-half of your mole or birthmark does not match the other moles or birthmarks on your body.
- B which is for Border: This is when the edges are irregular, blurred, notched or ragged.
- C which is for Colour: This is when the colour is not the same and can include some shades of black, brown, pink, red, white or blue.
- D which is for Diameter: This is when the spots become larger than 6 millimetres (the size of a pencil eraser).
- E which is for Evolving: This is when the mole changes in size colour and shape.
Sometimes some of the melanomas do not fit these rules, which is why it is very important you tell your doctor about some warning melanoma signs like;
- Any sore that doesn’t heal
- Any redness or new inflammation that is beyond the border of the mole.
- When there is a spread in pigment from the mole or spot to the skin that surrounds it.
- When the surface of the mole begins to bleed, appear bumpy.
- When there is a change in the sensations on the mole or spot, such as feelings of pain, tenderness, or itchiness.
Melanoma treatments depend on their size and also the stage of the melanoma cancer.
Some of the melanoma treatments include;
- Surgery: this is carried out to remove the melanoma. When the melanoma prognosis is good, the melanoma cancer can be removed alongside some healthy skin and a layer of tissue under the skin. But when the melanoma cancer is in as advanced stage, some affected lymph nodes may also be removed.
- Chemotherapy: This is the form of treatment that is used to destroy the melanoma cancer cells. There can be given in a form of pills, intravenously or together so that it can travel throughout the body.
- Biological therapy: This is a form of therapy used to boost the immune system which fights the melanoma cancer. Side effects of these treatments can sometimes be similar those of the flu, and can include fatigue, chills, headache, fever and muscle aches. Some of these biological therapy used in treating melanoma cancer includes; interferon and interleukin-2, ipilimumab (Yervoy), nivolumab (Opdivo), and pembrolizumab (Keytruda).
- Radiation therapy.This is a form of treatment where high-powered energy beams, such as X-rays are used to kill cancer cells. Radiation therapy is sometimes used after surgery to help in relieving symptoms of melanoma that have spread to other parts of the body.
- Targeted therapy.Targeted therapy is the use of medications designed to target specific vulnerabilities in cancer cells. Some of these medications include; Vemurafenib (Zelboraf), dabrafenib (Tafinlar) and trametinib (Mekinist) which are targeted therapy drugs that are used in the treatment of advanced melanoma.