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living with advanced melanoma

OHC Is Making It Possible to Live Longer With Advanced Melanoma

Suzanne M. Partridge, MD, OHC Medical Oncologist, Hematologist and Principal Investigator for OHC’s skin cancer clinical trials, Blogs, 0 comments
May 20, 2019


Melanoma isn’t fair. Especially because it’s almost impossible to go about our daily lives without encountering some level of sun and ultraviolet light exposure. Even though we can use the best precautions to protect ourselves, we can still develop this dangerous form of skin cancer. Now melanoma may have met its match, thanks to the cancer experts at OHC.

Melanoma is dangerous because it can spread very quickly, and become life-threatening in as little as six weeks. But OHC doctors are successfully using immunotherapy drugs to combat stage 3 and 4 melanomas when the five-year survival rate drops to 23 percent.

For Ronald, it was a mole he had for a long time. He didn’t think about it until one day he noticed it had changed. It had progressed to stage 4 melanoma. Fortunately, he was referred to OHC and was treated with an immunotherapy drug that has kept his melanoma in check.

I knew the results from clinical trials showed good outcomes from using the immunotherapy drug, Keytruda to treat melanoma. And Keytruda has been FDA-approved, so, based on the efficacy and safety, we treated Ronald’s melanoma with it. He’s been taking it for two years now and is doing well.

An added benefit of the immunotherapy drugs is that they typically have fewer side effects than chemotherapy drugs, so Ron is able to go about his daily life without disruption from nausea and pain.

For now, melanoma is still ahead in the battle for a cure, but hopefully not for long. OHC doctors are fighting back, using new approaches like immunotherapy drugs, targeted medicine, and the ground-breaking chimeric antigen receptor T cell (CAR-T) therapy to treat cancer. And when we do find a cure, we have no intention of playing fair with melanoma or any other cancer.

To learn more about the signs, symptoms and treatments for skin cancer, we encourage you to visit here for more information about skin cancer. To learn more about immunotherapy, visit here or call 1-800-710-4674 for an appointment or a second opinion.


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