Screening for the presence of melanin in the urine is used in the diagnosis of melanoma.
Melanin is a dark pigment that gives color to the skin, eyes, and hair and is produced by a particular type of cell called a melanocyte. Melanin levels are drastically increased in people with melanoma, a dangerous type of skin cancer. Melanin appears in the urine after being first converted into melanogenic, compounds that are abundantly produced in melanoma patients.
The clinical indications for urine melanin testing are:
- After a mole biopsy (nevus) showing potential cancer
- New nevus on the skin or deteriorated/altered appearance of existing nevus
- Unexplained skin pigmentation
People with darker skin have melanocytes that produce melanin in significantly higher amounts than those with lighter skin.
Laboratory test results are the most important parameter for the diagnosis and monitoring of all pathological conditions. 70%-80% of diagnostic decisions are based on laboratory tests. The correct interpretation of laboratory results allows a doctor to distinguish "healthy" from "diseased".
Laboratory test results should not be interpreted from the numerical result of a single analysis. Test results should be interpreted in relation to each individual case and family history, clinical findings, and the results of other laboratory tests and information. Your personal physician should explain the importance of your test results.
At Diagnostiki Athinon we answer any questions you may have about the test you perform in our laboratory and we contact your doctor to get the best possible medical care.