Treatment overview for advanced melanoma
The main treatments for advanced melanoma are chemotherapy, biological therapies, radiotherapy and surgery.
When a melanoma has spread to other, more distant parts of the body, it can no longer be cured. But treatments can usually be given to help shrink and control the secondary cancer or cancers and relieve symptoms. These treatments may be used alone or in combination.
Chemotherapy and biological therapies are commonly used to help control or shrink the growth of advanced melanoma.
Radiotherapy can be used to help control symptoms if melanoma has spread to the brain, liver, bones or the skin.
Surgery may sometimes be used to remove secondary tumours (tumours that have spread to other parts of the body, such as distant lymph nodes, the brain, bowel or skin). It’s normally used if there’s only limited spread of the cancer.
Other treatments may sometimes be used for advanced melanoma, specifically to treat skin nodules. They include laser therapy and isolated limb perfusion or infusion with chemotherapy.
Watch Amanda's story of coping with advanced cancer.