Clay M. Anderson, MD | Authors

Malignant Melanoma: Biology, Diagnosis, and Management

April 01, 2005

Cutaneous malignant melanoma is a relatively common neoplasm. In the United States in 1995, an estimated 34,000 cases of melanoma will be diagnosed, and 7,200 persons will die of melanoma [1]. Early primary melanoma is highly curable, but once the disease becomes disseminated, it is nearly always fatal. The overall survival rate has more than doubled from 40% in the 1960s to more than 80% today, but this increase is attributable to earlier diagnosis rather than to treatment advances [2].

Corticosteroids in Advanced Cancer

February 01, 2001

Despite the fact that there are only a few controlled trials demonstrating the benefits associated with the use of corticosteroids in specific situations, these agents are administered frequently to patients with advanced cancer. Corticosteroids may be used alone or as adjuvants in combination with other palliative or antineoplastic treatments. For example, corticosteroids may help prevent nausea, vomiting, and hypersensitivity reactions to treatment with chemotherapy or radiation. They are also commonly used as appetite stimulants in patients with advanced cancer. In the adjuvant setting, corticosteroids help to alleviate pain in advanced cancer patients, including specific situations such as back pain related to epidural compression. This article reviews the evidence supporting the use of corticosteroids in a broad range of situations seen in patients with advanced cancer. [ONCOLOGY 15(2):225-236, 2001]

Systemic Treatments for Advanced Cutaneous Melanoma

November 01, 1995

The treatment of advanced cutaneous melanoma remains disappointing. Single-agent cytotoxic drugs usually produce response rates of less than 20%, though newer agents, particularly fotemustine and temozolomide, show some promise, especially in patients with brain metastases.