melanoma under a toenail

Posted By
jean c
4/21/2011 8:24pm
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Replies: 3

Has anyone been diagnosed with the above, and what did it look like?  My next to little toe is completely light purple under the nail and has been that way for several months.  It hasn't been bumped or anything.  Comments??

Janner - (4/21/2011 - 8:38pm)

Often times, melanoma under a nail is just a line of coloration.  But there is no "rule" on what it should look like.  It is also easy to traumatize a toe (even if you don't remember it).  Typically, you watch the nail area.  If the colored area grows out with the nail, it is most likely trauma.  But if the coloration stays in the same spot as the nail bed grows out, then it is worth a biopsy.  It's sometimes hard to wait because toenails grow so slowly.  If you have any questions, please contact a dermatologist.

Best wishes,


sharmon - (4/25/2011 - 7:39am)

Get to a good derm, get answers,  my husbands melanoma started under his toenail (big toe) in feb 2007.  We saw a derm and he misdiagnosed and said it was a fungus,  He sent us to a foot doctor and he missed it saying it was a staph infection ( it was sore by this time).  He sent us to a infectious diesease doctor who put in a pick line for antibiotics.  Nine month later I took him to a orthopedic doctor because I thought the infection was into the bone.  It looked really really bad.  He biopsied it and it was melanoma.  By now it was in his lymph nodes.  Fast forward to now. 

It is in his lungs he is stage 4 and we are into our third trial at MD Anderson and the tumors are growing again. 

Take charge and if in doubt have them cut it out!!!!  It could be your life.

My husband had a melanoma surgically removed from his back in 2006, no further treatment occurred, except regular follow up xrays. In 2010 his noticed a lump under his arm which turned out to be melanoma.  9 of 13 lymph nodes were effected. Surgery and radiation followed at MD Anderson. No further signs of disease at this time and no adjuvant care clinical trials have  been recommended. Pet scans about every 6 months and CT/brain MRI in between - all have been clear.  He is stage IIIC - so far, so good.  Other than symptoms of lymphodema in the arm, he has been symptom free for 8 months.

About a week ago, I noticed a spot under his middle toe. It looks like he bruised it, but he does not remember an injury.  Does anyone know whether after having been diagnosed with one type of melanoma, you are more likely to develop another type?