Archive : January, 2012

FDA cleared new device for melanomas

Thursday, January 19th, 2012

Melafind is a new device that has been FDA approved for use by dermatologists that can identify melanomas of the skin with greater sensitivity than a seasoned dermatologist alone (98% vs., 78%). That is, it correctly identified melanomas that were present 98% of the time. However, as always there is more to the story than meets the eye. The Melafind scope “misread” 15% of normal lesions as melanoma. These are called “false positives” and can lead patients to unnecessary tests, biopsies and even surgeries.  My recommendation is to continue to monitor the results of Melafind carefully but to definitely continue monitoring your skin even more carefully.  A board certified dermatologist is your best ally in diagnosing this deadly disease early in its curable phase. Best wishes for the New Year and remember to protect your skin. –          Rafael C. Cabrera, MD, FACS