Home  >  Health Encyclopedia  >  Health Encyclopedia Home

Health Encyclopedia

 

Health Encyclopedia Home



How Melanoma Spreads

How Melanoma Spreads

If melanoma grows at the site of the original tumor, it tends to grow in one of two ways:

  • Radial growth. This means the melanoma spreads horizontally along the top layers of your skin. Most melanomas start growing this way, but some may eventually grow into deeper layers of your skin.

  • Vertical growth. This means melanoma grows into deeper layers of skin. This kind of growth is more serious and may spread to other parts of the body. Some melanomas grow this way fairly quickly, but most grow along the top layers of skin first for some time.

Melanoma's growth to distant areas of your body is somewhat unpredictable. It tends to spread first to lymph nodes in the area of your original tumor. For example, if the tumor was on your leg, it may spread to lymph nodes in your groin area. But, sometimes, melanoma may spread to distant areas of your body, even if your lymph nodes have not been involved.

 
Related Items
Wellness Library
  Medical Symptoms You Should Never Ignore
Content Type 134
  Intraocular Melanoma
Cancer Source
  Limb-Saving Treatment for People with Melanoma: Isolated Limb Perfusion
  Melanoma Introduction
  Statistics About Melanoma
  Am I At Risk for Melanoma?
  Can I Get Checked for Melanoma Before I Have Symptoms?
  What Are the Symptoms of Melanoma?
  Melanoma Treatment Introduction
  Understanding Your Stage of Melanoma
  What Happens During Chemotherapy for Melanoma
  Do What You Can to Ease Side Effects of Treatment for Melanoma
  Sentinel Node Mapping for Melanoma
  I’ve Just Been Told I Have Melanoma
  Inspirational Poems
  What to Know About Surgery for Melanoma
  What to Know About Immunotherapy for Melanoma
  What to Know About Radiation Therapy for Melanoma
  How Your Doctor Uses Biopsies to Diagnose Skin Cancer
  Understanding Your Type of Melanoma
  Tests that Help Evaluate Melanoma
  Can I Survive Melanoma? What Is My Prognosis?
  What Are the Survival Rates for People with Melanoma?
  Tips for Feeling Your Best During Your Treatment for Melanoma
  Tell Your Healthcare Team How You Feel During Treatment for Melanoma
  Questions to Ask About Treatment for Melanoma
  What to Expect After Radiation Therapy for Melanoma
  What to Expect After Chemotherapy for Melanoma
  What to Expect After Immunotherapy for Melanoma
Cancer FAQs
  Frequently Asked Questions About Melanoma
NCI Patient Summary
  Intraocular (Eye) Melanoma
  Melanoma Treatment (PDQ®)
Quizzes
  Melanoma Quiz
Adult Diseases and Conditions
  Skin Cancer
  Melanoma
  Diagnosis and Staging of Melanoma