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How is soft tissue melanoma diagnosed?

It's often difficult to diagnose soft tissue melanoma because even on a cellular level, it resembles many other similar conditions. The process of diagnosing soft tissue melanoma (or clear cell sarcoma) usually begins with a physical exam that includes a review of your symptoms and medical history. If doctors suspect soft tissue melanoma, there are several tests that may be performed. The most important and most commonly-used test is a biopsy. In this procedure, doctors remove a sample of the tumor to be analyzed under a microscope. The sample may be removed using a thin needle, or all or part of the tumor may be surgically cut out. The sample is then analyzed using one of several tests to confirm the diagnosis of soft tissue melanoma.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.