Melanoma survival greater in women than men

May 9, 2012

Female patients with melanoma have an approximate 30 percent advantage over men in survival and progression, according to a recent study.

Rotterdam, Netherlands - Female patients with melanoma have an approximate 30 percent advantage over men in survival and progression, according to a recent study.

The study, undertaken by researchers from the Netherlands’ Erasmus University Medical Center, examined 2,672 patients with stage 1 and 2 melanoma in randomized adjuvant treatment trials conducted by the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer Melanoma Group.

Researchers found a survival advantage for women in both overall and disease-specific survival, HealthDay News reports. They also found advantages in time to lymph node and distant metastasis.

Survival advantages for women were consistent across all age groups and among nearly all prognostic subgroups. It was unclear whether the advantages were present for head and neck melanomas.

"Women have a consistent and independent relative advantage in all aspects of the progression of localized melanoma of approximately 30 percent, most likely caused by an underlying biologic sex difference," the study authors wrote.

The study was published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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