mel·a·no·ma | \ ˌme-lə-ˈnō-mə \
plural melanomas also melanomata\-mə-tə \

Definition of melanoma 

1 : a tumor containing dark pigment

2 : a highly malignant tumor that starts in melanocytes of normal skin or moles and metastasizes rapidly and widely

Examples of melanoma in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

He was diagnosed with melanoma in November 2014, but did not have to go through chemotherapy. Sarah Wu, The Seattle Times, "Is Station 31 making Seattle firefighters sick? Study hopes to find answers about ‘Cancer House’," 6 July 2018 In women, the rate of breast cancer among flight attendants was 50 percent higher, and the rate of non-melanoma skin cancer was more than four times as high as in the control group. Nicholas Bakalar, New York Times, "Airline Crew Have Higher Cancer Rates," 5 July 2018 Immunotherapy has been a cancer buzzword for a few years now, and it’s shown surprising success against hard-to-beat cancers like metastatic melanoma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Amanda Macmillan,, "This Woman's Terminal Breast Cancer Disappeared After Immunotherapy. Here's Why That's Such a Big Deal," 8 June 2018 Sun safety resources An incidence of melanoma skin cancer is 50 percent higher in Anne Arundel County than the rest of Maryland., "Health digestAnne Arundel County health briefs," 30 May 2018 The study also showed that some cancers carry higher genetic risks than others, for example, skin melanoma, and the reproductive cancers (prostate, ovarian, breast and uterine). Ruth O. Selig, Washington Post, "Years ago when my twin got breast cancer I took drastic action and am grateful I did," 28 May 2018 Currently, immunotherapy is most promising fighting cancers with a high level of mutations such as bladder cancer, melanoma and lung cancer. Orlando Sentinel,, "PODCAST: Using the immune system to fight cancer (Ep. 29)," 21 May 2018 According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, an estimated 90% of non-melanoma skin cancers and 90% of skin aging are caused by sun exposure, the majority of which occurs during normal daily activity, not lounging on the beach. Dr. Melina Jampolis, CNN, "Aging gracefully: Tightening your skin safely and effectively," 16 May 2018 When used alone, the drugs have been shown to improve patient survival in cancers including melanoma and certain types of lung cancer. Jonathan D. Rockoff, WSJ, "New Drug Combinations Improve Survival in Lung Cancer," 16 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'melanoma.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of melanoma

1838, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for melanoma

New Latin

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Statistics for melanoma

Last Updated

27 Aug 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for melanoma

The first known use of melanoma was in 1838

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English Language Learners Definition of melanoma

medical : a type of cancer or tumor that begins as a dark spot or area on the skin


mel·a·no·ma | \ ˌmel-ə-ˈnō-mə \
plural melanomas also melanomata\-mət-ə \

Medical Definition of melanoma 

1 : a benign or malignant skin tumor containing dark pigment

2 : a tumor of high malignancy that starts in melanocytes of normal skin or moles and metastasizes rapidly and widely

called also malignant melanoma, melanocarcinoma, melanoepithelioma, melanosarcoma

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