Melanocytic lesions of the genital area with attention given to atypical genital nevi

Adriana Ribé

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

    42 Citations (Scopus)


    Melanocytic lesions of the genital area are rare. They arise mainly in the vulva, although they can also occur less frequently in the perineum, mons pubis and male genitalia and represent 10-12% of pigmented lesions of White women. These pigmented lesions include melanocytic nevi, lentigines, melanocytic nevi with architectural disorder and atypia of melanocytes (dysplastic nevi) and melanomas with microscopic features similar to those seen elsewhere on the body. There is a small subset of benign nevi named atypical melanocytic nevi of the genital type (AMNGT) that occur in young women, with distinctive histologic features in some cases overlapping morphologically with those of melanoma. Thus, it is important to distinguish AMNGT from melanomas in terms of prognosis and treatment. We retrieved 58 cases of genital pigmented lesions diagnosed at our hospital from 1986 to 2008 to evaluate their clinicopathologic features with especial consideration to those cases with atypical features. Thirty-two cases (55%) were common nevi, 10 (17%) lentigines, 6 (10%) melanomas, 3 (5%) dysplastic nevi and 1 blue nevus. Six cases (10%) corresponded to AMNGT and were taken from women with a median age of 21 years. All cases showed symmetry, and the melanocytic proliferation was well demarcated at the lateral margins. The junctional component was very prominent and formed by round or fusiform nests with common retraction artifact and/or cellular dyshesion or as a single cell proliferation with mild (33%) to moderate (67%) cytologic atypia, focal pagetoid spread (17%) and a benign-appearing dermal component (83%) with maturation and dense eosinophilic fibrosis in the superficial dermis. Neither nuclear atypia of melanocytes in the superficial dermis nor dermal mitoses were observed. AMNGT were excised, and no recurrences were recorded in the follow up (median 10.5 years). Therefore, it seems that there is no evidence that AMNGT are precursors of dysplastic nevi or melanomas. © Blackwell Munksgaard 2008.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)24-27
    JournalJournal of Cutaneous Pathology
    Issue numberSUPPL. 2
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2008


    Dive into the research topics of 'Melanocytic lesions of the genital area with attention given to atypical genital nevi'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this