What is Malignant Melanoma of the Rectum?
Malignant melanoma of the rectum is a rare type of cancer that develop usually in the 5th or 6th decade of life with chief complaints of bleeding from the rectum ,pain in the anus, and changes in defecation habits. It is a rare cancer that account for approximately 0.5-4% of all anal and rectal cancers. Malignant melanoma of the rectum has the tendency to spread to the other distant parts of the body. It is more common in females than males. It shows poor prognosis (chances of cure) with overall 24 months to 5 year survival rate is only 10%. It is more common in Caucasians than African and Americans.
What is a Rectum?
The rectum is the lowest part of the large intestine which is close to the anus.
There is no well-known cause, however certain hereditary and genetic mutations along with certain risk factors such as cigarette smoking, older age, obesity, lack of regular physical activity, low fiber intake, and excessive consumption of coffee, alcohol, and tobacco are considered responsible for the development of malignant melanoma of the rectum.
Signs and Symptoms
Malignant melanoma of the rectum usually presents with signs and symptoms suggestive of primary rectal carcinoma. Sign and symptoms of malignant melanoma of the rectum as follow:
- Bleeding from the rectum
- Diarrhea alternates with constipation.
- Discomfort in the abdomen
- Nausea and vomiting
- Unintentional weight loss
- Persistent fever
- Constant fatigue
Diagnosis is made based on case taking and examination. For further evaluation following investigations are done.
- Digital rectal examination (DRE)
- CT scan
- Chest x-ray
Treatment of malignant melanoma of the rectum remains uncertain. While surgical treatment may be indicated for some localized tumors. However, medical management is the primary goal of the treatment. The following treatment is considered for its management.
- Surgical resection (surgical removal of the tumor along with some healthy surrounding tissues).
- EBRT( External beam radiation therapy)
What Support can we Give for Malignant Melanoma of the Rectum?
Malignant Melanoma of the Rectum is rare cancer, meaning it is not as well known as other forms of cancer. Without a Ribbon is an Australian organisation that provides support for individuals who suffer from rare cancers. So, we provide a designated platform for Warriors to obtain information specific to their Rare Cancer. We also provide annual opportunities for our Warriors to meet and learn from each other. If you suffer from rare cancer such as Malignant Melanoma of the Rectum, we can help and support you through your journey thanks to the generous donations we receive. Click the link below to sign up and become a Warrior today!
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Without a Ribbon is a charity that works hard to aid those who suffer from rare cancers. You can help our cause in a variety of ways: