NCCN Guidelines for Patients
How to use this booklet
Who should read this booklet?
This booklet is about treatment of cancer that starts in
skin cells that give skin its color. This type of skin cancer
is called melanoma. Melanoma can also form in the
eyes, nose, mouth, genitalia, or, rarely, in the internal
organs. These guidelines focus on melanoma that starts
in the skin. This booklet may be helpful for patients,
caregivers, family, and friends dealing with this cancer.
Does the whole booklet apply to me?
This booklet includes important information for many
situations. Thus, not everyone will get every test and
treatment listed. The first parts of the booklet cover
basic information that will make it easier to understand
later parts. Each topic is described at the start of Parts
1 through 8. Page numbers are listed so you can flip
right to the topic of interest. Your treatment team can
also point out the parts that apply to you and give you
more information. As you read through this booklet, you
may find it helpful to make a list of questions to ask your
The step-by-step treatment guide in Part 6 includes the
recommendations that NCCN doctors agree are most
useful for most patients. However, each patient is unique
and these specific recommendations may not be right for
you. Your doctor may suggest other tests or treatments
based on your medical history and other factors. This
booklet does not replace the knowledge and suggestions
of your doctors.
Making sense of medical terms
In this booklet, many medical words are included that
describe cancer, tests, and treatments. These are words
that you will likely hear your treatment team use in the
months and years ahead. Some of this information may
be new to you, and it may be a lot to learn.
Words that you may not know are defined in the text
or the sidebar. Words with sidebar definitions are
underlined when first used on a page. All definitions are
listed in the
in Part 9. Acronyms are also listed
in the text or the sidebar. Acronyms are words formed
from the first letters of other words. One example is
U.S. for United States.