What are complications of melanoma?

Updated: Mar 08, 2019
  • Author: Jonathan B Heistein, MD; Chief Editor: Gregory Gary Caputy, MD, PhD, FICS  more...
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Answer

Answer

Inability to close the excision site primarily is not truly a complication; however, wound dehiscence, skin necrosis, or both can occur from closure under tension. Wound infection is a potential complication. Seromas and lymphoceles occur up to 27% of the time with axillary node dissection, while nerve dysfunction and/or pain can occur 22% of the time, and hematoma can occur 1% of the time. Lymphedema of the upper and lower extremities can complicate axillary and groin lymph node dissections. The rates vary from 2-39%. Avoid incomplete resection at all costs. Careful preoperative evaluation and meticulous attention to detail intraoperatively should help minimize the risk of these complications.


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