Updates in Pharmacotherapy for Melanoma

Angie Amado, PharmD Candidate 2019; Sonia Amin Thomas (Sonia Patel), PharmD, BCOP

Disclosures

US Pharmacist. 2018;43(6):HS2-HS9. 

In This Article

Abstract and Introduction

Abstract

The incidence of melanoma continues to increase exponentially. It was estimated that, in 2016, 76,380 people in the United States would be diagnosed with melanoma and about 10,130 would die of this disease. Survival rates have started to improve because of new and emerging systemic therapies, including immunotherapy and targeted therapy. The National Comprehensive Cancer Network has updated its guidelines on the use of immunotherapy and targeted therapy in melanoma. Pharmacists can help the clinician select the most appropriate therapy and can actively conduct patient education.

Introduction

It was calculated that, in 2016, 76,380 people in the United States would be diagnosed with melanoma and about 10,130 would die of the disease. It is estimated that an individual loses 20.4 years of potential life as a result of melanoma, compared with 16.6 years for all malignancies.[1] This exponential increase is more rapid than for other malignancies in both men and women, with the exception of lung cancer in women.[2] Survival rates in patients with melanoma, like those for most malignancies, depend on the stage at presentation. In the United States, 84% of patients with melanoma present with localized disease, 9% with regional disease, and 4% with distant metastatic disease.[3] Five-year survival rates range from 90% for localized disease with various parameters to less than 10% for distant metastatic melanoma.[4,5] However, emerging and effective systemic therapies, along with targeted therapies for specific genetic alterations in distinct clinical subtypes of melanoma, have increased the possibility of long-term remission for a larger number of patients.[6]

Comments

3090D553-9492-4563-8681-AD288FA52ACE

processing....