|Abstract (English)|| |
There is a global rising incidence of melanoma. For different reasons, the patterns of the incidence, appearance, gender, anatomical distribution and outcome vary among different geographic areas. Screening programs have led to better early detection of melanoma in Australia and some world areas. National Cancer Registry and practice data show the incidence in Croatia to be constantly rising. Despite public education programs about early detection, at clinical departments there are still many new advanced stage melanoma patients. We analyzed data on 157 patients treated and followed up for 10 years for T1b-T4aN0 skin melanoma. There was a difference in anatomical distribution of melanoma lesions in correlation with patient age (ANOVA test, F=3.51, p=0.009). A higher prevalence of shoulder melanoma was found in young people and of head/neck melanoma in the elderly (post-hoc Sheffe test, p=0.038). T4 lesions were more commonly found in men and T1 mainly in women (Pearson χ2-test, χ2=12.08, p=0.016). There was no difference in Clark level, but a significantly higher Breslow stage was found in men (t=-2.52, p=0.013). Men were much more prone to have head and neck, body and shoulder melanoma, whereas women had more melanoma on their legs and arms. Clark and Breslow levels were strongly correlated in leg melanoma; head localization showed no correlation at all. In conclusion, more attention should be devoted to improve the results in melanoma detection in men, especially considering the prevalence of body (back) and head/neck localizations, sometimes not readily accessible for visual detection. The pattern of distribution also pointed to the need for more attention to pay to shoulder melanoma in younger people.