Accurate staging is very important for determining a prognosis and appropriate treatment for malignant melanoma (MM). The aim of this study is to determine the effectiveness of PET/CT imaging in staging MM. Patients diagnosed with MM who then underwent PET/CT metastasis before treatment were assessed retrospectively. For each patient, the following variables were recorded: Breslow thickness, Clark’s level, number of mitoses and presence of ulceration detected in the pathology report and the presence of lymph nodes and/or distant metastases detected by PET/CT. The pathology and PET/CT reports of 139 patients (79 female and 60 male) were retrospectively evaluated for staging after MM diagnosis. Patients with a Breslow thickness greater than 3.4 mm and Clark’s level of 4-5 were found to be statistically significantly higher with regional lymph node metastasis after PET/CT scans. Patients with Breslow thickness greater than 2.85 mm and Clark’s level of 4-5 were found to be statistically significantly higher with distant metastasis after PET/CT scan. The results of our study suggest that PET/CT imaging for metastasis scanning, starting with T2 patients, may be used in MM staging to reduce the need for SLN biopsy and lymph node dissection. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.