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Pediatric melanoma: incidence, treatment, and prognosis

Authors Saiyed FK, Hamilton EC, Austin MT

Received 19 January 2017

Accepted for publication 10 March 2017

Published 18 April 2017 Volume 2017:8 Pages 39—45

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/PHMT.S115534

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Lucy Goodman

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Roosy Aulakh

Faiez K Saiyed,1 Emma C Hamilton,1 Mary T Austin,1,2

1Department of Pediatric Surgery, McGovern Medical School, 2Department of Surgical Oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX, USA

Abstract: The purpose of this review is to outline recent advancements in diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of pediatric melanoma. Despite the recent decline in incidence, it continues to be the deadliest form of skin cancer in children and adolescents. Pediatric melanoma presents differently from adult melanoma; thus, the traditional asymmetry, border irregularity, color variegation, diameter >6 mm, and evolution (ABCDE) criteria have been modified to include features unique to pediatric melanoma (amelanotic, bleeding/bump, color uniformity, de novo/any diameter, evolution of mole). Surgical and medical management of pediatric melanoma continues to derive guidelines from adult melanoma treatment. However, more drug trials are being conducted to determine the specific impact of drug combinations on pediatric patients. Alongside medical and surgical treatment, prevention is a central component of battling the incidence, as ultraviolet (UV)-related mutations play a central role in the vast majority of pediatric melanoma cases. Aggressive prevention measures targeting sun safety and tanning bed usage have shown positive sun-safety behavior trends, as well as the potential to decrease melanomas that manifest later in life. As research into the field of pediatric melanoma continues to expand, a prevention paradigm needs to continue on a community-wide level.

Keywords: melanoma, pediatric, adolescent, childhood

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