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3 Different Skin Cancer Treatments

Learn about the various skin cancer treatments from board-certified dermatologist Ahmet Altiner in this Howcast video.


Treatment of skin cancer will depend on the type of skin cancer you have. If you have been diagnosed with a melanoma, the first step will be to cut out the actual tumor and the surrounding normal tissue. The amount of normal tissue needed for the examination will be determined by the depth of invasion by the melanoma.

The next step will be to determine if your lymph nodes have been involved. If they have not been involved, likely the only thing you will need is a simple excision. If there are melanocytes, and melanoma cells in the lymph node, it is very likely that you will need some sort of chemotherapy.

The type of chemotherapy to be used will be determined by our oncologist. Rarely, radiation therapy is also added to this regimen, if the size of the initial tumor was too big or if the surrounding tissue has been involved. The treatment for non-melanoma skin cancers tend to be easier.

They rarely metastasize to the rest of the body, so often times a simple excision at the site of the tumor is all that's needed. However, if the tumor is too large or has grown and spread into adjacent structures, radiation therapy can be utilized to shrink the tumor, either before or after the primary excision.

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