What type of tissue is affected by melanoma?
Although melanoma is the rarest of the skin cancers, it is considered the most serious type. It can easily spread into deep layers of skin as well as to lymph nodes and other organs. The skin’s layers include the epidermis (outer layer), dermis (inner layer) and hypodermis (subcutaneous tissue).
What cells and tissues does melanoma affect?
Skin cancer begins in the epidermis, which is made up of three kinds of cells:
- Squamous cells: Thin, flat cells that form the top layer of the epidermis.
- Basal cells: Round cells under the squamous cells.
- Melanocytes: Cells that make melanin and are found in the lower part of the epidermis.
Can you have melanoma for years and not know?
How long can you have melanoma and not know it? It depends on the type of melanoma. For example, nodular melanoma grows rapidly over a matter of weeks, while a radial melanoma can slowly spread over the span of a decade. Like a cavity, a melanoma may grow for years before producing any significant symptoms.
Where does melanoma usually spread to first?
Normally, the first place a melanoma tumor metastasizes to is the lymph nodes, by literally draining melanoma cells into the lymphatic fluid, which carries the melanoma cells through the lymphatic channels to the nearest lymph node basin.
Is skin cancer contagious if you touch it?
Cancer is NOT contagious
Close contact or things like sex, kissing, touching, sharing meals, or breathing the same air cannot spread cancer. Cancer cells from someone with cancer are not able to live in the body of another healthy person.
Which skin cancer grows fastest?
Merkel cell carcinoma tends to grow fast and to spread quickly to other parts of your body. Treatment options for Merkel cell carcinoma often depend on whether the cancer has spread beyond the skin.