Use these resources for finding a dermatologist, educating yourself about melanoma, connecting with others diagnosed with melanoma, and selecting the right products to protect yourself from the sun.

Have you or someone you love received a melanoma diagnosis?

The internet is filled with a great deal of information about melanoma and it can be overwhelming to know where to start. Fortunately, we’ve been there and done the weeding for you. Consider this page of melanoma cheatsheet of sorts. And, if you’ve got a question that isn’t covered – give us a shout.

Need help finding a dermatologist?

First thing’s first, get yourself a dermatologist that’s a member of the American Academy of Dermatology – basically, the cream of the crop. Here’s a handy database that lets you filter by specialty and location.

Who knows the most about melanoma research, education and advocacy?

Look no further than the Melanoma Research Alliance (MRA) and the Melanoma Research Foundation (MRF). These two sites offer a wealth of information and are leading the way in finding new treatments.

Need a lifeline?

The MRF’s Phone Buddy Program can put you in touch with others who have been diagnosed with melanoma and completed a wide range of treatments for their disease. Phone Buddies understand what you are going through because they’ve been there — and survived. They are available to share their own personal experiences and provide understanding, support and practical information.

Need free medical advice?

The AIM at Melanoma Foundation offers one-on-one help from a compassionate and knowledgeable oncology nurse provided at no charge. Patients, caregivers, family members, and healthcare professionals can get help with treatment options, clinical trials, finding a doctor, side effects and general questions via email or a toll free call.

Living with advanced melanoma??

TJ Sharpe, aka Patient 1, is a friend of our foundation and has an amazing blog. Not only is it is accurate and informative, but wildly funny.

Another great site for those whose lives have been affected by Melanoma is the David Cornfield Melanoma Fund. 

Tina’s Place is a retreat for patients with Stage III and IV Melanoma. Tina’s Place is called to be a lighthouse, guiding individuals and families to reconnect with nature and celebrate life in a peaceful lake front setting. They provide a free week-long lake front retreat in a 2-bedroom cottage in Michigan, to support Melanoma stage III & IV cancer patients and their families.

Find a Clinical Trial

As part of our mission to end melanoma, we have partnered with Antidote, a digital health company that uses cutting-edge technology to match the right patients with the right clinical trials. Patients can now match to clinical trials using a clinical trial locator, powered by Antidote. 
In addition, Antidote also offers researchers the opportunity to make their trial listings more patient-friendly through a free tool called Antidote Bridge. Bridge allows researchers to enhance their study pages with details that are most important to patients – things like number of overnight stays, financial compensation, and procedures used. This additional information helps close the information gap between patients and researchers, which ultimately leads to greater patient engagement.
As a Polka Dot Mama-affiliated researcher, we encourage you to take the time to register for Bridge and begin providing patients with as much information as possible to help them make informed clinical trial decisions. 

Sun Protection

As you might guess, we’re a little nutty about sun safety. We believe in a sun protection regimen that starts with sunscreen, followed by a spot in the shade and protective clothing – both a broad-brimmed hat and UV-blocking sunglasses. (Yep, we’re those people.)
By educating yourself about the many options, you can be confident that the product you choose will fit your particular needs, offering you the best protection from the sun’s harmful rays — and helping to ensure that you use it regularly.
Here’s our cheatsheet for sun safety.


Are you overwhelmed by all of the sunscreen choices out there? Want to know which ones are the best and safest to use? The most comprehensive site on sunscreen is the Environmental Working Group (EWG)’s guide to sunscreens. They provide extensive information on sunscreen products based on scientific literature and have compiled lists that include the best (and worst) scoring sunscreens on the market. Here are just a few of our favorite brands at Polka Dot Mama.

UPF Clothing

Clothes can protect your skin against the sun’s harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays. But not all clothing is created equal. The tightness of the weave, the weight, type of fiber, color and amount of skin covered all affect the amount of protection they provide. Here are the three we recommend.

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