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What You Need To Know About™

Melanoma and Other Skin Cancers

  • Posted: 01/11/2011

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Follow-up Care

After treatment for skin cancer, you’ll need regular checkups (such as every 3 to 6 months for the first year or two). Your doctor will monitor your recovery and check for any new skin cancers. Regular checkups help ensure that any changes in your health are noted and treated if needed.

During a checkup, you’ll have a physical exam. People with melanoma may have x-rays, blood tests, and scans of the chest, liver, bones, and brain.

People who have had melanoma have an increased risk of developing a new melanoma, and people with basal or squamous cell skin cancers have a risk of developing another skin cancer of any type. It’s a good idea to get in a routine for checking your skin for new growths or other changes. Keep in mind that changes are not a sure sign of skin cancer. Still, you should tell your doctor about any changes right away. You’ll find a guide for checking your skin in the How To Check Your Skin section.

Follow your doctor’s advice about how to reduce your risk of developing skin cancer again.

You may find it helpful to read the NCI booklet Facing Forward: Life After Cancer Treatment. You may also want to read the NCI fact sheet Follow-up Care After Cancer Treatment.

This text may be reproduced or reused freely. Please credit the National Cancer Institute as the source. Any graphics may be owned by the artist or publisher who created them, and permission may be needed for their reuse.