New treatment for Merkel cell carcinoma “less toxic, more effective”

March 4, 2019

On March 4th, 2019, Dr. Paul Nghiem presented at the annual American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) conference in Washington, DC on the need to prioritize treatment modalities that are less toxic and more effective for Merkel Cell Carcinoma (MCC). On noting that MCC cases have increased by 95% from 2010 to 2017, Dr. Nghiem addressed three main goals that aim to improve patient care. Preliminary studies highlight that performing wide local excisions pose the risk of increased morbidity and delays in starting the radiation treatment that is indicated in many cases. Additionally, patients treated with immunotherapy have shown higher overall survival rates and recurrence free survival in comparison to patients treated with traditional chemotherapy. To implement customized care, a dedicated team of physicians across multiple specialties are best guided by a coordinating physician who is very familiar with MCC management.

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To watch the full 2019 American Academy of Dermatology Plenary lecture, please click here.