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Melanoma Excision and Scar


Area of excision for melanoma

Scar after excision for melanoma

Surgery to remove (excise) melanoma removes the cancer and a border of healthy tissue. In the "Area of excision" picture:

  • The inner circle represents the melanoma and healthy tissue that are excised.
  • An eye-shaped incision (cut) is often done so that the surgical site can be neatly closed.

If the excision is small, the skin may be closed with stitches after surgery. The "After surgery" picture shows the usual shape of the scar after surgery to remove a small melanoma.

If the excision is large, a skin graft may be needed.

Other ways of removing a melanoma can leave a round scar or a scar shaped a little like the letter "Z."

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical ReviewerKathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical ReviewerAmy McMichael, MD - Dermatology
Last RevisedOctober 12, 2012

eMedicineHealth Medical Reference from Healthwise

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