Melanoma is caused by the overproduction of certain skin cells called melanocytes. This cell overgrowth usually starts on an existing mole on the skin or as a new skin growth. Generally, these growths are found in areas of skin that are exposed to sunlight, although they may be found in other parts of the body, including internal mucous membranes like those found in the esophagus and urinary tract. If left untreated, melanoma can spread rapidly to other parts of the body, so it is considered one of the more serious types of skin cancer.
- Q What is malignant melanoma?
- Q Can melanoma occur on the feet?
- Q How are melanoma cells different from other cancer cells?
- Q How can I reduce my risk of dying from melanoma?
- Q What determines how deep melanoma is?
- Q What factors affect my prognosis with melanoma?