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Melanoma Draft 1

Melanoma Draft 1

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Published by Sophie Schroeder

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Published by: Sophie Schroeder on May 07, 2012
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Schroeder1Sophie SchroederEnglish 1102PresnellApril 10, 2012Not A FriendMy parents both have Melanoma, which puts myself at about a 97% chanceof getting it. My interest began this past semester when I began to show signs of skin cancer. I want people especially my age to realize that Melanoma is not something to just brush off, they need to know what it is and what it looks like. The
sun is not anyone’s friend. Even though it can give some people a nice brown tan
which in their minds makes them look better. The sun is under estimated in what it can do to your skin. There are lucky people out there who bake in the sun from dayto day without any problems, but for those who catch the worst of it can end up withskin cancer, such as Melanoma.Melanoma ismost dangerous type of skin cancer. According to datapublished in 2009 by the World Health Organization, an estimated 132,000 newMelanoma cases are diagnosed worldwide each year. It is the leading cause of deathfrom skin disease. Melanoma is amalignant tumorof melanocytes.Melanocytes are cells that produce the dark pigment,melanin,which is responsible for the color of skin. The main reason or cause why most people get Melanoma is the sun.BothUVA and UVB rays are dangerous to the skin, and can induce skin cancer, includingmelanoma. Blistering sunburns in early childhood increase risk, but cumulativeexposure also is a factor. People, who live in locations that have more sunlight like
 
Schroeder2Florida, Hawaii, and Australia, develop more skin cancers.Avoid using a tanningbed, since it increases your exposure to UV rays, raising your risk of developingmelanoma and other skin cancers. The most common form that Melanoma comes inis a mole. If it is over exposed to the sun, a mutation starts to begin. The best way todetermine if you have the slightest possibility of having it, is to check your wholebody for moles that are disfigured, or a dark reddish brown color. If a mole aspopped up out of no where, someone should also go to the doctor to get it checkedout. Heredity plays a major role in melanoma. About one in every 10 patientsdiagnosed with the disease has a family member with a history of melanoma. If yourmother, father, siblings or children have had a melanoma, you are in a melanoma-prone family. Each person with a first-degree relative diagnosed with melanoma hasa 50 percent greater chance of developing the disease than people who do not havea family history of the disease.Melanoma in young people has been on the rise in the last 5 years. Kids thesedays are laying out from morning to afternoon hoping that their skin will be adifferent color by the end of the day. Most do not even care if they get sunburn
because that “in theory” will eventually turn to tan. Being tan looks good to most 
teens and is the cool thing. No one actually realizes that each time they are gettingdarker, it increases their risk of getting Melanoma.
“Melanoma is a burden to carry
around, and I get nervous every time I see young people looking as dark as the wood
on my stained deck. They have no idea what might be coming their way” Sarah
Schroeder states. Teens think they are invincible and something in their minds assimple as skin cancer will never happen to them. But in reality out of every 10
 
Schroeder3young adults one of them will end up with Melanoma. But the sad thing is most 
people in general these days don’
t even know what it is. They think skin cancer issomething that comes and goes, but if someone gets Melanoma it is with them forlife.Treatment for Melanoma all depends on how early it is caught. If caught early then chances are good if it is still in Stage 0 or 1, which means it has not spreadto other parts of the body and it is not deep into the skin. With Melanoma in Stage0/1 all that needs to be done is have the area of skin cut out. This does not meanthat the Melanoma is gone forever, the area still has to be watched and it alwayscould come back. If Melanoma is caught in Stage 2 the rates are still good, but at thispoint some of the cancer cells may have moved to other sites which can cause theMelanoma to keep coming back more frequently and quicker. The main site can stillbe removed, but for the best results the patient should go to the doctor every 2 to 3weeks. If caught in Stage 3 the rates drop down much lower than the other stages.At this point the cancer cells have spread to many different places, which calls for amore drastic surgery, which makes sure most of the spots are cut out. Lastly, if theMelanoma is caught in Stage 4, which is the last stage, the survival rates are slim tonone. There is sadly no reason to cut out the cancerous cells because by this timethey will be all over the body. Five-year survival ranges from 7%-19%.I did a survey in my dorm and asked around 50 people if they knew what Melanoma was. If they said yes then I asked them more questions about it. About 40% of the people I asked had no idea what it was. Most knew it was a type of disease but they could not tell me the cause of it. I had about 4 people Google it in

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