Sample Healthcare Case Study Paper on Malignant Melanoma

Explain the factors that made the lesion suspicious for cancer

Most melanomas have different shades of color like red, white, black or brown. This particular lesion was reddish-black with a rough surface.  The border and surface of the lesion were irregular and it appeared to be thick.  Malignant moles have irregular borders and are asymmetrical which means if you draw a line through the mole, the two halves will not match. (Strayer & Reynolds, 2003) There was also a similar lesion located nearby.

Discuss predisposing factors for melanoma in the patient

Exposure to Ultraviolet (UV) light is the major cause of skin damage by the sun. They damage the skin cells DNA and skin cancer begins when the DNA of genes that regulate the growth of skin cells is damaged (American Cancer Society, 2016). Melanoma on the back and chest   and legs has constantly been linked to sun burns especially in childhood.

The patient has many moles on his body. A mole, also referred to as nevus, is a benign pigmented tumor. Majority of moles on the body are harmless and do not necessarily lead to cancer. Having many moles however, increases the risk of getting melanoma (American Cancer Society, 2016). People with irregular moles that are more than 5mm in diameter (atypical mole syndrome), have an increased risk of developing melanoma

Mr P.X is 45years old. The risk of developing melanoma increases with age as a result of accumulated UV radiation exposure (American Cancer Society, 2016). The patient was diagnosed with superficial spreading melanoma which is most common in middle aged people.



Predict the prognosis and the reasons for it

The prognosis is not good. Superficial spreading melanoma grows horizontally on the top layer of the skin before spreading into the deeper layers and is the most common type of melanoma. The diagnosis revealed a stage 3 skin cancer because the cancer cells had spread to the lymph nodes. (Chun, 2017) The patient will therefore require surgery to remove the cancerous lymph nodes and other forms of treatment like chemotherapy, radiation therapy or immunotherapy   to prevent remission. According to the American Cancer society, survival rates for stage 3 melanoma are between 40% and 78% and these rates are lower for people exposed to many risk factors.



American Cancer Society. (2016, May 20). Risk Factors for Melanoma Skin Cancer. Retrieved May 13, 2018, from

Chun, C., MPH. (2017, September 19). Superficial Spreading Melanoma: Know the Signs. Retrieved May 13, 2018, from

Strayer, S. M., MD, MPH, & Reynolds, P., MD. (2003). Diagnosing skin malignancy: Assessment of predictive clinical criteria and risk factors. The Journal of Family Practice, 52(3), 210-218. Retrieved May 13, 2018.