The presence of enlarged epithelioid/spindled nests located deep in the reticular dermis of a biphasic melanocytic neoplasm can mimic melanoma arising in a pre-existing nevus, causing over-interpretation of malignancy. We aimed to define the clinicopathologic significance of epithelioid/spindled nests in melanocytic nevi. Retrospectively using clinical and histologic information, we characterized 121 patients with a single lesion showing epithelioid/spindled melanocytes in the reticular dermis or subcutaneous fat, surrounded by melanophages, sometimes blending in with the adnexa. The majority of nevi occurred in women in the ages of 10 to 39 years, where the most frequent presentation was a changing mole. While 78% of the lesions displayed an anatomic (Clark’s) level of IV-V, there was no ulceration, significant regression or inflammation. Up to 2 mitoses were found in only 12% of the cases, not correlating with the severity of cytological atypia. No recurrence or metastasis occurred during 45.5 months (mean) of clinical follow up in 26 patients. Notwithstanding the deep dermal extension, these findings suggest a benign histopathology and clinical outcome. Having compared the overlapping histopathology and clinical features between deep penetrating/clonal nevus and combined nevus, we posit that “inverted type-A nevus” might be considered a variant of the two.
- atypical dermal nodule in benign melanocytic nevus
- combined nevus
- deep penetrating nevus
- melanocytic nevus with focal atypical epithelioid component (clonal nevus) nevus with phenotypic heterogeneity
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine