Latest Research

Newsflash: The sun isn’t always to blame

When it comes to adolescent and young adult melanoma, leading experts say genetics and hormonal changes during puberty are often a factor. So while most kids face nothing worse than the stress of acne, others — like Claire — get adolescent melanoma.

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Hypothyroidism, puberty & melanoma

Hypo what? In a nutshell, hypothyroidism means the thyroid gland can’t make enough thyroid hormone to keep the body running normally. It can develop during puberty and has been linked to melanoma. Such was the case with Claire. This study, from MD Anderson, found that hypothyroidism can feed the development of melanoma cells.

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Pregnancy & Melanoma

More and more mommas-to-be are getting melanoma. According to new Cleveland Clinic research, women younger than 50 who are pregnant or have recently been pregnant are most at risk. So, what’s the deal? Researchers at the Cleveland Clinic found hormonal changes in pregnancy can be the culprit.

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Melanoma Can Develop Where the Sun Don’t Shine

Acral lentigimous melanoma (the type of melanoma that took Bob Marley’s life) can develop on the feet, under toenails and fingernails.

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Melanoma and Ethnicity: Melanoma Doesn’t Discriminate

It’s a common misconception that people with darker skin are immune to skin cancer. The truth is, while skin cancer and melanoma is more common among lighter-skinned people, it tends to be deadlier among people of color.

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UPF Plus SPF Saves Lives

Research shows you need sun protective clothing in addition to sunscreen to protect your skin from the sun. Consider it an excuse to go shopping.

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Women, Estrogen and Melanoma

Yet another study indicates melanoma is not always about the sun. Scientists are now investigating why women under 50 are proving to be at greater risk for melanoma.

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Melanoma can appear where you least expect it!

Research by Japanese scientists has found stress and damage caused by normal walking or running could be a risk factor for developing melanoma on the soles of the feet.

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When it comes to melanoma, thinner is better!

Screening for skin cancer is essential in saving lives. The risk of dying of the disease is directly related to the thickness or depth of the melanoma. The longer a malignancy goes unnoticed, the thicker the melanoma grows and greater the risk of dying.

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Never let a doctor tell you that your child it too young to get melanoma.

A 2013 study published in the journal Pediatrics reports the number of diagnosis of melanoma in young people is on the rise by 2% each year in the U.S. It is estimated by The National Cancer Institute that some 500 children in the U.S. will be diagnosed with melanoma each year. Melanoma is also the second most common form of cancer for adolescents and young adults between 15 and 29 years old. A recent study from Johns Hopkins found young people with melanoma have a higher risk of invasive disease than adults.

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Why is melanoma misdiagnosed or overlooked in the young?

The signs of melanoma in young people are often overlooked as the disease presents very differently from those melanomas seen in adults. Melanomas in children and adolescents tend to be nodular lesions that grow thick, rather than broad in scope. The standard hallmarks of adult melanoma diagnosis, known in medicine as the ABCD’s of detection often do not apply. Thus, the melanomas are often overlooked or misdiagnosed as something as simple as warts, spitz nevi or other non threatening skin conditions.

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What are the signs of adolescent/pediatric melanoma?

Only a qualified professional who understands pediatric melanoma can make a diagnosis, but immediately have your child evaluated if you observe any of the following signs: (courtesy Melanoma Research Foundation)

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