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Survival depends on thickness

Researchers discover melanoma survival link

QIMR researchers bring new reassurance to melanoma patients with thin invasive tumours after finding that 20 years after diagnosis their survival rate is 96% .

Professor Adele Green from QIMR led a research collaboration to assess the 20 year survival rates for Queenslanders diagnosed with thin invasive melanoma.

“We analysed the data of over 26,000 Queenslanders diagnosed with thin invasive melanoma and found their prognosis was mostly influenced by two factors: the measured thickness of their tumour and the site of their melanoma,” Professor Green said.

“While invasive melanoma is considered the most deadly form of skin cancer, our research found people suffering with thin melanomas, which are invasive melanomas that are less than 1mm in thickness, generally have a good chance of survival.

“We also found that melanomas on either the head, or the soles of feet or palms of hands or under the nails, can influence affected patients’ survival more negatively.

Professor Green led the collaboration between QIMR; the Cancer Council Queensland; The University of Queensland; Princess Alexandra Hospital; and Murdoch Children’s Research Institute.

The results of this study have been published online in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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