Important information

A person with a suspected melanoma should be referred to a dermatologist who is a member of a relevant multidisciplinary team.

All specialists listed on Canrefer are members of a multidisciplinary team.


What is melanoma?

Melanoma is a type of skin cancer which starts in cells called melanocytes.

Graphic of a human body highlighting the skin cells


What tests do I need?

Common tests used to diagnose melanoma include:

  • physical examination
  • biopsy or removal of the suspected melanoma
  • blood tests
  • imaging - CT scan, MRI scan and/or PET scan.


What treatment options are there?

Treatment for melanoma can include one or more of the following:

  • surgery
  • targeted therapy
  • immunotherapy
  • radiotherapy
  • chemotherapy.

If treatment is specialised and complex, patients may need to travel to have a part of their treatment. The local health district will have an arrangement in place for this.


How common is melanoma in NSW?

Melanoma was diagnosed in:

  • 2015
    4386 people in NSW
  • 2014
    4393 people in NSW
  • 2013
    4351 people in NSW
Data source: Cancer statistics NSW portal (sourced from Institute Data Warehouse, Cancer Institute NSW. Available at:

Last updated: 21 February 2019
Better cancer care

Better cancer care

Every person with cancer should have their care overseen by a specialist on a multidisciplinary team.

Melanoma pathway

The nationally recognised optimal care pathway for melanoma management in Australia.
Quick reference guide
Optimal care pathway