Melanoma and Merkel Cell Carcinoma Staging
Recorded on December 15, 2010 (60 minutes)

 The Seventh Edition Cancer Staging Manual incorporates some significant changes in cancer staging for specific disease sites.  The purpose of this presentation is to highlight the major changes for Melanoma and Merkel Cell Carcinoma.

Target Audience:  This program is primarily intended for physicians, but also open to cancer registrars. 

Learning Objectives:

1.     Understand the new chapter on Merkel Cell Carcinoma

2.     Identify the changes to the melanoma chapter

3.     Discuss the rationale for the changes

4.     Review prognostic factors 



Financial support for the development of this presentation and webinar has been provided by the American Cancer Society. The information provided here does not necessarily represent the views of the American Cancer Society, Society Staff, or it's Board of Directors. 




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The American Cancer Society has provided funding to underwrite the cost of the AJCC webinars beginning in September 2010. The new price is a reflection of their generous financial support.

Charles M. Balch, MD, FACS


Charles M. Balch, MD, FACS leads a distinguished career as a clinical and academic surgical oncologist and a leading authority in both melanoma and breast cancer. As revered teacher, astute administrator, and world-renowned speaker, he continues to build networks in the field of clinical trials and outcomes research. Over the past 30 years he has authored over 600 publications on topics such as, clinical investigations involving the natural history of melanoma, prognostic factors predicting clinical outcomes, standards of surgical treatment, and the conduct and methodology of clinical research and immunology. Dr Balch is generally regarded as one of the leading melanoma experts in the world. He is the editor of Cutaneous Melanoma, regarded as the authoritative textbook on melanoma, now in its 5th edition.  He is the founding Editor-in-Chief of the Annals of Surgical Oncology and is Chair of the Melanoma Staging Committee of the AJCC.

Prior to coming to Johns Hopkins, Dr. Balch held major leadership roles involving clinical research in three comprehensive cancer centers (UAB, M D Anderson, and City of Hope). He has been a Principle Investigator or Co-PI of numerous clinical trials, including 10 phase III trials, most of which were NCI-funded National Phase III trials. He has organized or participated in randomized surgical trials that have defined the current standards of melanoma surgery. Dr. Balch's leadership roles have involved the Society of Surgical Oncology (President), the American Board of Surgery (Board of Directors), the Association of Academic Surgeons (President) and the Commission on Cancer (Chair, Board of Directors) and the American Joint Committee on Cancer (Executive Committee).

Dr. Balch has over 30 years of experience in breast cancer management and research. He has multiple publications with scientific articles and book chapters involving the multidisciplinary and surgical management of breast diseases. His clinical trials leadership in breast cancer in the 1980s and 1990s included the only randomized surgical trial comparing radial vs. modified radical mastectomy, as well as the early development of skin-sparing mastectomy and immediate breast construction; two major advances at the time which contributed to the evolution of breast surgery. He was also one of the early pioneers on developing the sentinel lymph node biopsy in the staging of breast cancer, especially in breast cancer patients who had received pre-operative chemotherapy. Dr Balch was the founding editor of Breast Diseases, which is now in its eighteenth year of publication.


Paul Nghiem, MD, PhD

Paul Nghiem, MD, PhD, earned his medical degree from Stanford University School of Medicine in 1994 along with a Ph.D. from Stanford's Program in Cancer Biology. He was an intern at Brigham & Women's Hospital from 1994 to 1995 and a resident in dermatology at Massachusetts General Hospital from 1995 to 1998. From 1998 to 2002, he was a Howard Hughes Physician Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology at Harvard University with Stuart Schreiber. Among his many involvements in professional organizations and publications, Nghiem has served on the editorial board of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology since 2003.


Faculty Disclosures

CE Credit:  The National Cancer Registrars Association(NCRA) has determined that this program 2010-099 supports 1.0 CE Hours.

CME Credit: 

The American College of Surgeons is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medial education for physicians.

The American College of Surgeons designates this educational activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits TM.  Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.
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