Non-Hispanic Black Melanoma Patients Present With Advanced Disease

T category and stage at presentation higher for non-Hispanic Black patients
Non-Hispanic Black Melanoma Patients Present With Advanced Disease
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WEDNESDAY, May 15, 2024 (HealthDay News) -- Non-Hispanic Black (NHB) melanoma patients have distinct tumor characteristics, presenting with more advanced disease and exhibiting worse outcomes, according to a study published in the May issue of the Journal of Surgical Oncology.

Jessica A. Steadman, M.B.B.S., from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, and colleagues examined features of melanoma within NHB patients to inform strategies for earlier detection and treatment. Nonmetastatic melanoma patients with known TN category and race were identified from 2004 to 2019 Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results data.

Of the 492,597 patients, 0.3 percent were NHB. Compared with non-Hispanic White (NHW) patients, NHB patients were younger (21 versus 17 percent aged younger than 50 years) and were more often female (54 versus 41 percent). The researchers found that lower extremity was the most common site for NHBs (52 versus 15 percent for NHWs); in addition, T category was higher (Tis to T1 and T3 to T4: 55 and 27 percent versus 82 and 8 percent, respectively) and stage at presentation was higher (stage III, 19 versus 6 percent). Among NHB patients, men were older than women and they were more often node-positive. After adjustment for age and clinical node status, five-year stage III cancer-specific survival was 42 percent for NHB men versus 71 percent for women.

"Our contemporary overview of nonmetastatic cutaneous melanoma highlights that NHB patients present with more advanced disease and exhibit inferior outcomes," the authors write. "This is most notable among older male NHB patients."

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