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What is the prognosis for patients with stage II melanoma?

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Quick Answer

The prognosis for stage II melanoma ranges from 40 to 67 percent survival after 10 years, according to the American Cancer Society. The survival rate varies based on whether the patient's cancer is staged at IIA, IIB or IIC.

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Full Answer

The staging for melanoma includes variables found in a biopsy that are rated A, B or C. In stage II, the tumor may be more developed, based on thickness and whether the tumor is ulcerated, the American Cancer Society states. The thicker the tumor, the more likely it is to spread. Prognosis is also poorer for patients with ulcerated tumors. Patients with IIA melanoma have a higher survival rate after five and 10 years than those with IIC.

Other factors also play a role in melanoma survival rates, reports the American Cancer Society. Patients with weakened immune systems or who are diagnosed after age 70 tend to have a shorter lifespan. African-Americans, who rarely develop melanoma, may have a lower survival rate than Caucasians. Some studies point to a poorer prognosis for patients with melanoma found in particular parts of the body, such as the sole of the foot, palms or nail bed, which are found more frequently in African-Americans than Caucasians.

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