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September 13, 1971

Malignant Melanoma in Husband and Wife

JAMA. 1971;217(11):1553. doi:10.1001/jama.1971.03190110071027

To the Editor.—  "Familial incidence of malignant melanoma has been rarely commented on in the literature." Cawley1 reported its occurrence in a father, son, and daughter. Anderson2 added 22 examples to 63 cases previously reported. Bowen3 reported two successive generations suffering from malignant melanoma of the eye. Petersen4 in a review of 220 cases noted that a familial history was very rare and cited only two examples in his series, one in a father and daughter and the other one in a brother and sister.We are not aware of reference to its contemporaneous occurrence in a husband and wife.

Case 1.—  The wife, aged 41 years, the mother of six children, one of whom was partially blind from congenital bilateral glaucoma, had a malignant mole removed from her right lower leg in August 1967. The mole had been removed at the insistence of her husband