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The Center for Melanoma integrates the most current knowledge of cancer genetics, world-class resources for diagnosing and staging skin cancers, and leading-edge treatment approaches to provide personalized care and support services to adults, adolescents and children diagnosed with invasive or non-invasive melanoma.
This program is recognized worldwide for the evaluation and treatment of:
Our physicians and research scientists are recognized globally for developing new treatment approaches for melanoma and other skin cancers. These programs include:
Our dermatologists see a large number of melanoma patients and are highly expert at recognizing suspect moles and other lesions. They are early adopters of techniques and technologies that improve diagnostics and are on the forefront of evaluation and monitoring of melanoma and other skin cancers. The diagnostic and staging information provided by these specialists helps define the best treatment for your disease.
In addition, our world-renowned pathologists are leading research projects to improve diagnoses of melanoma and skin cancers, identify which patients are more likely to develop metastatic disease, and to determine the effectiveness of therapy early in the treatment program.
Our surgeons offer the highest degree of clinical expertise available in the treatment of these cancers. Among the procedures offered here are:
We are one of only a few centers in the country offering proton beam radiation. This approach is being used here for ocular melanoma, providing pinpoint accuracy to help preserve the eye in many cases. Your care team may suggest radiation therapy to reduce the size of tumors that are causing discomfort or interfering with your body’s functioning, or as an adjuvant therapy following removal of lymph nodes containing melanoma. Our radiation technologists are skilled at standard and novel technologies, including intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT).
Melanoma research underway at the Cancer Center is aimed at uncovering cancer-causing gene mutations and drugs that can target them. Studies include examining the effectiveness of existing targeted drugs, identifying tumor biomarkers which may improve management of melanoma in any stage, and studying the molecular basis beneath the link between UV exposure and melanoma and using this information to devise new prevention strategies. Learn more about melanoma research at the Cancer Center.
Each patient in the melanoma program is cared for by a multidisciplinary team of experts who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of skin cancers.
Depending on the type and stage of your cancer, your care team may include:
Members of your care team meet regularly with you and your referring physician to ensure good communication and coordination of care.
Basal cell cancer, sometimes called non-melanoma skin cancer, usually appears as a small, fleshy bump or nodule on the head, neck, or hands. Occasionally, these nodules appear on the trunk of the body, usually as flat growths.
Melanoma is a disease of the skin in which cancer cells are found in the melanocytes, the cells that produce color in the skin or pigment known as melanin.
Skin cancer is a malignant tumor that grows in the skin cells and accounts for more than 50 percent of all cancers.
Clinical research is conducted at the Pigmented Lesion Clinic — a major center for melanoma patient care in the New England area and a leader in all aspects of melanoma investigation — and at the Cancer Center, which offers a wide array of experimental therapeutics for patients with advanced melanoma.
(those who have not previously seen a doctor within the Mass General/Partners Healthcare Network)
Step 1. Obtain a medical record number (MRN). Call the Mass General Registration & Referral Center to register as a patient and obtain an MRN: 866-211-6588.
Step 2. Call the Cancer Center new patient appointment line: 617-726-5130. The schedulers can assist you in making the first available appointment with the appropriate physician. To help your call go smoothly, please have ready your:
Call the Center for Melanoma scheduling line: 617-724-5197. They will connect you with your treatment team.
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