Skin Cancer Experts

The Skin Cancer Program is a leading innovator in the research and treatment of skin cancer, including melanoma, basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, Merkel cell carcinoma, and cutaneous lymphoma. Through ongoing research and development, our team is improving the diagnosis of skin cancer and advancing the field of treatment options.

Skin Cancer Program
900 Blake Wilbur Drive
Palo Alto, CA 94304
Phone: 650-498-6000 Getting Here
Maps & Directions
900 Blake Wilbur Drive
Palo Alto, CA 94304
Phone: 650-498-6000 Getting Here

Our Doctors

Care and Treatment of Skin Cancer

Pigmented Lesion and Melanoma Expertise

Cutaneous melanoma patients and individuals with atypical nevi (moles) are primarily managed in the Pigmented Lesion and Melanoma Clinic. This clinic was developed to follow patients at increased risk of melanoma based on mole pattern and family history as well as to provide initial evaluation and ongoing surveillance for patients with cutaneous (skin) and more advanced melanoma.

Patients with atypical mole syndrome are described as having over 50 to 100 moles with generally 5 or more showing clinical atypia (variation in color or irregular, asymmetric borders, and/or size greater than 8mm diameter). Affected individuals are estimated to have a 5-50-fold increased risk of melanoma depending on family history of melanoma.

The Stanford Pigmented Lesion and Melanoma Clinic employs total body mole mapping through DigitalDerm™ to assist in the early detection of severely atypical moles and cutaneous melanoma. Most skin melanomas do not arise from a pre-existing mole, which adds to the advantage of total body photography for assessing new or changing pigmented lesions. Mole mapping is generally recommended for appropriate patients on a one-time basis, and individuals are encouraged to use the photos to assist with regular skin self-examinations. Stanford Dermatology is the sole provider of Digital Derm total body mole mapping in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Stanford is a participant in the National Cancer Institute/University of Arizona Phase I/II Cancer Chemoprevention Consortium, designed to prevent melanoma and other skin cancers in high-risk individuals at the outset.  

Among the specialized treatments available to program patients are:

  • State-of-art total body digital mole mapping for early detection of melanoma. A combined  PET/CT scanner creates a fusion of diagnostic capabilities to deliver the most accurate and sensitive detection of melanoma possible.
  • The sentinel lymph node biopsy (SLN) examines the regional lymph nodes for possible microscopic spread of melanoma. This advanced procedure sequentially combines preoperative lymphoscintigraphy and intraoperative mapping to provide a highly accurate means of identifying the sentinel lymph in malignant melanoma. Use of a novel gamma camera device to improve accurate SLN identification is underway through a collaboration between our melanoma surgeons and the Molecular Imaging Program at Stanford.
  • Positron emission tomography (PET) is used to detect melanoma within the body as part of the staging work up. PET scanners do not use standard radiation, and reveal collections of melanoma cells in the body that may otherwise be clinically or radiologically undetectable.  Stanford physicians were among the first in the nation to explore the use of PET for detection of metastatic disease in melanoma patients and routinely use the combined PET-computed tomography (CT) scanners for the most accurate staging and surveillance of patients with melanoma and other cancers.
  • CyberKnife, a stereotactic radiosurgery technology developed by Stanford Neurosurgery almost 20 years ago is available for treatment of brain metastases.  
  • Immunotherapies, including ipilimumab and adjuvant high-dose interferon for metastatic melanoma patients
  • Novel chemoprevention trials to prevent the development of skin cancer (both melanoma and nonmelanoma types) in high-risk individuals. 
Clinic Providers

Clinical Trials

Clinical trials and research in skin cancer

The Stanford Skin Cancer Program offers clinical trials for treatment of advanced melanoma. Stanford is an active participant in the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) multicenter clinical trials for melanoma, and a number of studies are open for patients with regional nodal metastasis and disseminated disease. Collaboration with our premier basic science departments will continue to provide new techniques and insights in the diagnosis and treatment of melanoma.

Doctors at the Stanford Skin Cancer Program are involved in clinical trials which allow patients access to treatments not yet available elsewhere.

Before beginning treatment, ask your doctor about any clinical trials you should consider. Learn more about clinical trials for cancer patients.

Clinical trial eligibility flowcharts

Eligibility flowcharts map clinical trials to specific types of cancers to determine if a participant is eligible for the particular clinical trial. View all skin cancer eligibility flowcharts at the Stanford Cancer Institute.

For Patients


Review the New Patient Packet for information about:

  • What to expect on the day of your appointment
  • Maps, directions, parking, public transit options, and contact information
  • Other patient resources

Bring completed forms found in the Skin Cancer New Patient Letter.


Please fax the Medical Record Release Form to your new patient coordinator. The medical release form is an authorization form for external facilities to release medical records to Stanford Health Care (formerly Stanford Hospital & Clinics). 

International Patients
Phone: +1 650-723-8561

Call us to make an appointment



For Health Care Professionals

Stanford Health Care (formerly Stanford Hospital & Clinics) provides comprehensive services to refer and track patients including access to PRISM, our referring provider portal.


Phone: 1-866-742-4811
Fax: 650-320-9443
Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Stanford Health Care (formerly Stanford Hospital & Clinics) provides comprehensive services to refer and track patients, as well as provides the latest information and news for physicians and office staff. For help with all referral needs and questions visit Referring Physicians.


Fax a referral form with supporting documentation to 650-320-9443.

Please note, though this form is from Stanford Health Care (formerly Stanford Hospital & Clinics), it is also used for all Cancer Center referrals.

Track your patients' progress and communicate with Stanford providers securely online.

Learn More About PRISM »