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What are the treatment options for stage 1 melanoma?

The most common treatment for stage 1 melanoma is surgical removal of the mole or growth and some of the surrounding tissue. Stage 1 melanoma has started to spread from the epidermis, or topmost layer of skin, to the next layer of skin. Because it's begun to spread, doctors will usually remove the entire growth and about 2 centimeters of surrounding tissue, including the fat and occasionally the tissue lining the muscle below. After the initial removal, doctors may recommend sentinel lymph node biopsy, which is a procedure that determines whether the cancer has spread to surrounding areas. Follow-up treatment includes yearly appointments with your doctor to make sure the melanoma hasn't returned or spread.

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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.