Melanoma thickness equally hard for algorithms and dermatologists to judge

Source: Science Daily, July 2022

Assessing the thickness of melanoma is difficult, whether done by an experienced dermatologist or a well-trained machine-learning algorithm. A study from the University of Gothenburg shows that the algorithm and the dermatologists had an equal success rate in interpreting dermoscopic images.

In diagnosing melanoma, dermatologists evaluate whether it is an aggressive form (“invasive melanoma"), where the cancer cells grow down into the dermis and there is a risk of spreading to other parts of the body, or a milder form (“melanoma in situ," MIS) that develops in the outer skin layer, the epidermis, only. Invasive melanomas that grow deeper than one millimeter into the skin are considered thick and, as such, more aggressive.

Importance of thickness