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April 1976

Malignant Melanoma and Associated Cancer

Arch Dermatol. 1976;112(4):560-561. doi:10.1001/archderm.1976.01630280078040

To the Editor.—  The interesting article by Beardmore and Davis titled "Multiple Primary Cutaneous Melanomas" (the Archives 111:603, 1975) reports statistical data, anatomic site of location, pathologic findings, and death and survival rates for 57 (3.9%) of 1,444 patients from the Queensland Melanoma Project (Australia) who developed more than one primary melanoma. This article contains sound advice about cancer control in patients with a single primary melanoma. The physician is admonished to carefully examine all areas of the skin for evidence of additional primary melanomas.However, we believe that in the interest of maximizing cancer control, the tumor spectrum should be extended for melanoma patients and should include other histologic varieties of cancer including those of the breast, gastrointestinal tract, and lung, as well as sarcomas and leukemia.1 This problem assumes greater importance when one realizes familial melanoma accounts for approximately 3% of all occurrences of this disease.2

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