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Melanomas of the hand are relatively rare, and much confusion exists concerning their pathology and treatment. We reviewed our experience with 39 patients diagnosed with melanoma of the hand. The data were categorized by site, histology, and type of treatment. Most primaries were on the digits, with a few tumors arising on the palm. The most common histology was superficial spreading melanoma, even in the subungual location. Acral lentiginous melanoma accounted for only 8 of 39 cases. Most patients could be treated without radical amputations, even for melanomas on the digits. Réview of our patients emphasized the need for early diagnosis. Biopsy of all unexplained pigmented lesions on the hands can lead to early diagnosis, relatively nondeforming treatment, and good survival.
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Accepted: October 15, 1996
Received: July 12, 1995
*No benefits in any form have been received or will be received from a commerical party related directly or indirectly to the subject of this article.
© 1997 The American Society for Surgery of the Hand. All rights reserved. Published by Elsevier Inc.