For some patients, doctors recommend treatment after surgery to reduce the risk of melanoma developing again.
Before melanoma spreads past the lesion on the skin, doctors can usually remove the tumor and get rid of the cancer. But people who have stage 2B, 2C or stage 3 melanoma have a greater than 30 percent chance of developing melanoma again. “For these patients, we recommend adjuvant treatment after recovery from the initial surgery to reduce this risk,” says Ahmad Tarhini, a professor in the division of hematology/oncology at University of Pittsburgh. This is known as maintenance therapy.