Incidence

The incidence of cutaneous MM, particularly thin curable lesions, has increased steadily over the past 30 years in all western countries and this has been accompanied by a similar but less marked increase in mortality.1 Whilst mortality has continued to rise in most countries, recent reports from Scotland, Canada, Australia and Wales suggest that mortality rates may have levelled off or declined in some groups, notably in women.2-5 This may be the result of intensive public education campaigns leading to earlier detection of thinner lesions, with a better prognosis . The prevention of MM is an important topic and is dealt alongwith other skin cancers in Chapter 22. Early recognition of MM and surgical excision present the best opportunity for cure.

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