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October 1985

A Histologic Comparison of Congenital and Acquired Nevomelanocytic Nevi

Author Affiliations

From the Division of Dermatology, Department of Medicine, The Children's Hospital (Drs Rhodes and Silverman), the Department of Pathology, Massachusetts General Hospital (Dr Harrist), the Laboratory of Computer Medicine, Beth Israel Hospital (Dr Melski), and the Departments of Dermatology (Drs Rhodes and Silverman), Pathology (Dr Harrist), and Medicine (Dr Melski), Harvard Medical School, Boston.

Arch Dermatol. 1985;121(10):1266-1273. doi:10.1001/archderm.1985.01660100046013

• A reliable microscopic differentiation of nevomelanocytic nevi (NMNs) as congenital or acquired would be useful in defining a histogenic relationship between cutaneous melanoma and congenital NMN. In order to delineate histologic differences between congenital NMN and acquired NMN, a standardized assessment was conducted blindly, using a sample of consecutive surgical specimens of NMN submitted to a children's hospital pathology file. Despite significant histologic differences between congenital NMN and acquired NMN, the lack of a reliable prevalence rate for the proportion of congenital NMNs among all NMN specimens submitted for pathologic examination precludes a precise estimate of predictive value for diagnosing a given NMN as congenital or acquired based on histologic features alone. The results of this study can be used neither to support nor to refute a histologic association between cutaneous melanoma and congenital NMN.

(Arch Dermatol 1985;121:1266-1273)