JOURNAL ARTICLE
MULTICENTER STUDY

Clinical and dermoscopic characterization of pediatric and adolescent melanomas: Multicenter study of 52 cases

Cristina Carrera, Alon Scope, Stephen W Dusza, Giuseppe Argenziano, Gianluca Nazzaro, Alice Phan, Isabelle Tromme, Pietro Rubegni, Josep Malvehy, Susana Puig, Ashfaq A Marghoob
Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology 2018, 78 (2): 278-288
29024734

BACKGROUND: Knowledge regarding the morphologic spectrum of pediatric melanoma (PM) is sparse, and this may in part contribute to delay in detection and thicker tumors.

OBJECTIVE: To analyze the clinicodermoscopic characteristics of PM.

METHODS: Retrospective study of 52 melanomas diagnosed in patients before the age of 20 years.

RESULTS: On the basis of its clinical, dermoscopic, and histopathologic characteristics, PM can be classified as spitzoid or nonspitzoid. The nonspitzoid melanomas (n = 37 [72.3%]) presented in patients with a mean age of 16.3 years (range, 8-20) and were associated with a high-risk phenotype and a pre-existing nevus (62.2%). The spitzoid melanomas (n = 15 [27.7%]) were diagnosed in patients at a mean age of 12.5 years (range, 2-19) and were mostly de novo lesions (73.3%) located on the limbs (73.3%). Whereas less than 25% of PMs fulfilled the modified clinical ABCD criteria (amelanotic, bleeding bump, color uniformity, de novo at any diameter), 40% of spitzoid melanomas did. Dermoscopic melanoma criteria were found in all cases. Nonspitzoid melanomas tended to be multicomponent (58.3%) or have nevus-like (25%) dermoscopic patterns. Spitzoid melanomas revealed atypical vascular patterns with shiny white lines (46.2%) or an atypical pigmented spitzoid pattern (30.8%). There was good correlation between spitzoid subtype histopathologically and dermoscopically (κ = 0.66).

LIMITATIONS: A retrospective study without re-review of pathologic findings.

CONCLUSION: Dermoscopy in addition to conventional and modified clinical ABCD criteria helps in detecting PM. Dermoscopy assists in differentiating spitzoid from nonspitzoid melanomas.

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