NCCN Guidelines for Patients® | Melanoma - page 18

NCCN Guidelines for Patients
Melanoma, Version 1.2014
Treatment planning starts with testing.
This section describes the tests
that are used to confirm (diagnose)
melanoma skin cancer and plan
treatment. This information can help
you use the
Treatment guide
in Part
5. It may also help you know what to
expect during testing. Not every person
with melanoma will receive every test
General health tests
Your doctor may send you to a dermatologist if
you have signs of skin cancer. A dermatologist is a
doctor who’s an expert in diseases of the skin. Most
skin changes aren’t cancer, but sometimes only
a dermatologist will know. This section describes
common exams and tests used by dermatologists.
Medical history
Before and after cancer treatment, your doctor will
assess your medical history. Your medical history
includes any health events in your life and any
medications you’ve taken. This information may affect
which cancer treatment is best for you. It may help to
make a list of old and new medications while at home
to bring to your doctor’s office.
Your doctor will ask about any symptoms and medical
conditions that you have had. There will be specific
questions about your skin and moles. Some health
problems, including melanoma, can run in families.
Therefore, your doctor will ask about the medical
history of your immediate family and other risk factors
you have for melanoma. A risk factor is something
that increases the chance of getting a disease. (See
page 11 for more details on risk factors.)
Tests for melanoma
16 General health tests
17 Tumor tissue tests
20 Lymph node tissue tests
21 Blood tests
21 Imaging tests
24 Websites | Review
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