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Melanoma of the scalp and neck had greater risk of melanoma-specific mortality than melanoma of the extremities

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N E Thomas

Dr N E Thomas, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC, USA; nancy_thomas@med.unc.edu

STUDY QUESTION

In patients with melanoma, are tumours of the scalp or neck associated with increased risk of melanoma-specific mortality?

STUDY DESIGN

Design:

inception cohort.

Setting:

13 Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) registries in the USA.

Patients:

51 704 white, non-Hispanic adults ⩾20 years of age (mean age 56 y, 56% men) who had a first invasive microscopically confirmed cutaneous melanoma and were included in the National Cancer Institute SEER-13 registries between 1992 and 2003 (>42% followed up for ⩾5 years).

Prognostic factors:

tumour site (scalp/neck, extremities, trunk, face/ears, and unknown), other tumour characteristics (Breslow thickness, ulceration, lymph node involvement, and histological subtype), and patient characteristics (age at diagnosis and sex).

Outcome:

melanoma-specific mortality.

MAIN RESULTS

9% of patients died from melanoma during follow-up. Melanoma-specific survival was lower for patients with scalp/neck melanoma than for those with melanoma in other locations (5 …

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