NCCN Guidelines for Patients® | Melanoma

22 NCCN Guidelines for Patients ® : Melanoma, 2018 2  Tests for melanoma Tumor tissue tests The pathology report A pathology report is a document with information about tissue removed from your body during a biopsy or surgery. A pathologist examines the tissue with a microscope to check for cancer cells and then writes the results in the pathology report. Your doctors will use this information to decide which treatment is best for you. The pathology report includes many important test results and details of the tumor. It states whether cancer cells were found and, if so, what types of cancer cells. Other findings in the pathology report are used to determine the extent of the cancer. This is called staging and it is explained in Part 3. The process of preparing the tissue, examining it, and giving results to your doctor takes at least several days. At times, the pathologist may have questions and request a 2 nd opinion from another pathologist. For melanoma, the tissue samples should be sent to a dermatopathologist or pathologist experienced in pigmented skin lesions to examine. A dermatopathologist is a doctor who’s an expert in testing skin cells and tissues for disease. Contact your treatment team if you have questions about your pathology report or if you would like a copy of it.