Association Between Patient Age and Lymph Node Positivity in Thin Melanoma

July 2017

Cancer

Country of origin: USA

Study team sought to determine whether there was an association between patient age and lymph node positivity in melanomas that were 0.5-1mm, a group of patients where sentinel lymph node recommendations are not always clear-cut. This was a retrospective cohort study involving 8772 patients who had resection of their melanoma with lymph node evaluation enrolled in the National Cancer Database, a database that captures about 70% of all new cancers in the US. In multivariable analysis, younger age at time of diagnosis of melanoma was associated with an increased likelihood of nodal positivity. This increased risk was found in patients with tumors that had either ulceration or mitoses (AJCC T1b) as well as in tumors of at least 0.76mm in thickness without ulceration or mitoses (AJCC T1a). Patients with a tumor less than 0.76mm without ulceration or mitoses had an overall low rate of nodal positivity regardless of age.

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