Of the numerous prognostic factors for patients with localized malignant melanoma (LMM), none is superior to the simple parameter of tumor thickness. The aim of the present study was to better define prognostic factors for this disease. Between January 1992 and December 1994, 188 consecutive patients with LMM were treated at the Rabin Medical Center. Patient and tumor characteristics were retrospectively examined as potential prognostic factors. Patients (n=173) who had had at least two-year follow-up were included in the overall survival (OS) analysis, and 159 patients for whom accurate data on recurrent disease were available were included in the disease-free survival (DFS) analysis. At a median follow-up of 85 months (range 24-114), 48 patients (30%) had recurrent disease which resulted in death in 35 (20%). The five-year OS and DFS rates for the entire group were 82 and 72%, respectively. On univariate analysis, female gender, age younger than 75 years, metachronous or synchronous second skin cancer (including melanoma), light skin color, tumor thickness and TNM stage were predictive of both OS and DFS. Tumor location and ulceration, correlated with only one endpoint, OS or DFS, respectively. On multivariate analysis, three factors retained statistical significance with regard to both OS and DFS: tumor thickness (p=0.000 for both), second skin cancer (p=0.02 for both), and age (p=0.04 for both). Alongside the well-established predictive factor of tumor thickness in LMM, older age and the presence of a second skin cancer also have prognostic significance. The prognostic importance of the latter is reported here for the first time.