What is Melanoma Of The Penis?
Penile melanoma is a very rare cancer, accounting for approximately 0.1% of all melanoma cases. Melanoma is a cancerous skin cancer that develops from skin cells that produce pigment. Penile melanoma is a cancer of the penis that forms from the pigment-producing cells in the skin of the penis. It is a very rare cancer as only 220 cases of penile melanoma have been reported worldwide so far. The most common site of the cancer is the glans penis (rounded head or tip) part of the penis.
It accounts for 0.7% of penile cancers and 0.1% of melanoma cancers. The average age for the development of the disease is 44 years.
Disease Etiology (Causes)
There is no known cause. However, a history of sexually transmitted diseases, trauma, and certain medications are risk factors for developing penile lymphoma.
Signs and Symptoms
The patient may suffer from the following signs and symptoms. These are
- Masses or lumps in the shaft of the penis
- Frequent urge to pass urine
- Difficulty in passing urine
- Pain while passing urine
- Ulcer on the penis
- Abnormal discharge from the penis
- Swelling and enlargement of the pelvic lymph nodes
- Pain in the abdomen
- Night sweats
- Weight loss
The following diagnostic tests and procedures can be used to make a diagnosis. These are
- Imaging tests, such as computed tomography CT-scan, MRI, and PET scans, to examine the location, size, and extent of the tumor.
- Complete blood count (CBC)
- Liver function test (LFT’s)
- Renal functional test (RFT’s)
- Urine complete examination to rule out certain infections which may be the cause of penile lymphoma
- Immunohistochemistry tests
- Biopsy of the cancerous mass or lump and its histopathological examination
Treatment options vary according to the types of cancer cells, their size, and the extent of the tumor. Surgical resection (removal of the tumor along with some marginal healthy tissues of the affected organ) of the tumor is the main treatment option, while in advanced cases penile amputation (surgical removal of the cancer tissues) along with radiation and chemotherapy is the main treatment option.
What Support can we Give for Penile Melanoma?
Penile Melanoma is a 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 Penile Melanoma 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: