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Variables Identified in Congenital Melanocytic Nevi

Predominant dermoscopic patterns vary according to patients' age and lesion location

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 22 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with congenital melanocytic nevi, the major dermoscopic patterns vary by age and lesion site, according to a report published in the August issue of the Archives of Dermatology.

Ashfaq A. Marghoob, M.D., of the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City, and colleagues studied 77 lesions in 77 patients.

The researchers found that the most common dermoscopic patterns were reticular (23 percent), globular (18 percent) and reticuloglobular (16 percent). They observed the globular pattern in five of 19 subjects under age 12 and the reticular pattern exclusively in subjects age 12 and older. The investigators also observed that the globular pattern was more common in head, neck and trunk lesions than in the extremities, and that the reticular pattern was more common in extremities lesions than in the head, neck and trunk. Dermoscopic patterns did not vary by sex, the report indicates.

"Familiarity with the dermoscopic patterns commonly present in congenital melanocytic nevi may facilitate accurate classification of nevi and early detection of malignant change and therefore assist in the determination of whether prophylactic surgical excision of a given pigmented lesion is truly warranted," the authors conclude. "In addition, the identification of age- and site-related differences in dermoscopic patterns may inform future longitudinal studies examining the pathogenesis and subsequent evolution of congenital melanocytic nevi."

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