Melanoma and Skin Cancer Surgery Surgical Oncologists have undergone additional specialty training in oncology, and offer the highest degree of specialization and expertise. Cancer surgery is generally considered complex surgery and published data have demonstrated that hospitals and surgeons with the highest volume experience with specific operations have the lowest complication and death rates. Recognizing the relationship between frequency of performing an operation and the quality of outcomes, each surgeon in the Division of Surgical Oncology focuses his or her clinical practice on the management of one or two diseases.
The Melanoma/Skin Cancer Surgery Program in Surgical Oncology at Massachusetts General Hospital offers expert melanoma surgery in the context of a multi-disciplinary team. Melanoma specialists in Surgical Oncology provide surgical services for patients in the Internationally recognized Massachusetts General Hospital Pigmented Lesion Clinic.
Patients with melanomas are evaluated in the Center for Melanoma's multidisciplinary sessions, where they can meet with a surgeon, medical oncologist, dermatologist, have their pathology slides reviewed by a melanoma dermatopathologist, and receive definitive skin cancer treatment recommendations in a single visit. This multi-disciplinary team are on the leading edge in melanoma detection, prevention, and treatment, and offer participation in many clinical trials. The melanoma surgeons in Surgical Oncology are highly specialized, highly experienced, and nationally recognized experts. Specialized operations offered by melanoma surgeons in Surgical Oncology include:
- Surgery for primary melanomas
- Plastic surgical reconstructions
- Lymphatic mapping and sentinel node biopsy
- Lymph node dissections
- Hyperthermic isolated limb perfusion with melphalan for in transit metastases
- Hyperthermic isolated liver perfusion for patients with ocular melanoma liver metastases
Genetic counseling is offered through the Center for Cancer Risk Assessment to assess hereditary risk in young patients and patients with strong family histories of melanoma.