Modern melanoma therapy should be available to patients in Serbia from 2019, the Head of the Clinic for Skin and Venereal Diseases at the Military Medical Academy, Lidija Kandolf Sekulovic, stated on Wednesday, November 14. Each year, the disease strikes 650 people in Serbia.
– The innovative melanoma therapy which entails two medicines has been implemented since 2017, and we have now been promised by the competent bodies that the therapy options, in line with EU ones, will be expanded from January 2019 – she said at the press conference of the Association of Melanoma Patients UPOOM.
She said that the new therapy will be covered by health insurance and available to all melanoma patients.
– The treatment of this diseases requires early detection and an early and adequate therapy – Kandolf Sekulovic said.
According to her, people need to be educated about the risks of getting melanoma, especially about the harmful effects of excessive exposure to sunlight and using tanning booths.
She also pointed out that suntan lotions do not provide sufficient protection in peak UV radiation periods.
The president of the Serbian Association of Dermatovenereologists, Zeljko Mijuskovic, pointed out that the number of melanoma patients was on the rise locally and globally.
– In Serbia, of the 650 patients that get melanoma a year, 200 have metastases. They have a much greater chance of survival if the disease is detected early on and if modern therapy is applied – Mijuskovic said.
He recommends avoiding unnecessary UV exposure and yearly dermatology check-ups.