Good news for anyone worried about skin cancer with the FDA approving Melafind, which the manufacturers describeas a groundbreaking technology for detecting melanomas. Darrell S. Rigel, MD, Clinical Professor of Dermatology at New YorkUniversity Medical School confirmed the news : "MelaFind is a groundbreaking technology and represents one of themost significant advances in early melanoma detection since the advent of the ABCD criteria that our groupdeveloped over a quarter century ago ... While there have beenincremental improvements in imaging tools for melanoma detection,we still primarily rely on our eyes, experience and judgment.MelaFind provides objective information about indeterminatepigmented skin lesions to help us when deciding which lesions tobiopsy to detect melanoma as early as possible when it can still becured." Melanoma is the deadliest form of skin cancer because it moreeasily and aggressively spreads to other parts of the body. |
Itaccounts for around 75% of all skin cancer mortalities and althoughits virtually curable if detected early, the skin obviously beingone of the easiest parts of the body to treat, the problem remainswith catching it early enough. Joseph V. Gulfo, MD, President and CEO, MELA Sciences said : "The FDA approval of MelaFind marks the most important achievementin the company's history and represents a significant advance forthe millions of Americans who are at risk of developing thisterrible disease ... We are actively working to prepare to launchMelaFind in the Northeast U.S. and Germany during the firstquarter.
We're planning a steadfast, deliberate and measuredapproach to the commercial launch to ensure that dermatologists inpractices of all shapes and sizes are trained and set up to useMelaFind effectively on the patients who can benefit most from theobjective information that the system provides during skinexaminations." Melafind also received CE approval for release in Europe where thecompany plans a similar roll out strategy as for the North America. MelaFind is not an overall confirmation system in itself and is notmeant for a complete clinical diagnosis of melanoma. What itrepresents is another tool in the dermatologists kit and isdesigned for use on clinically atypical cutaneous pigmented lesionswith clinical or historical characteristics of melanoma. MelaFindis designed to be used when a dermatologist feels the need toobtain additional information for a decision to biopsy.
MelaFind is not meant for use by the general public as a physicianneeds to be trained in the clinical diagnosis and management ofskin cancer (i.e., dermatologists) and also complete a trainingprogram in the use of MelaFind. None the less it represents a significant breakthrough in the fightagainst skin cancer. With the five year survival rate for patientswith stage IV melanoma at less than 15%, and with most patientsdying within six to 10 months, detecting early melanoma andconducting prompt treatment is essential to improving theprognosis. With detection of early melanoma, surgical removal aloneis usually the only required treatment because the melanoma islimited to the epidermis, the outer layer of skin. In this earlystage, the cure rate with surgical removal is virtually 100%.
The markets are obviously confident of the product with the stockof Mela Sciences (MELA) up more than 10% in trading today. Copyright: Medical News Today Not to be reproduced without permission of Medical News Today Additional References Citations.
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