In situ melanoma of the nail unit in children: Report of two cases in fair-skinned caucasian children

Antonella Tosti, Bianca M. Piraccini, Anna Cagalli, Eckart Haneke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

51 Scopus citations

Abstract

Nail melanoma in children is rarely reported in the literature, and all of the published cases were diagnosed in dark-skinned phototypes or in Asians. We report two cases of in situ nail matrix melanoma presenting as longitudinal melanonychia (LM) in fair-skinned children of Italian origin. Nail plate dermatoscopy revealed a brown background with lines of irregular color, spacing, and thickness in both cases. Histopathology of the excised lesions showed melanoma in situ. Clinical, dermatoscopic, and pathological criteria that permit clear differentiation of benign melanocytic activation or proliferation from nail matrix melanoma are not established for children. The presence of a pigmented band of a single nail in a child usually represents a problem for clinicians, because the clinical and dermatoscopic features that are considered possible indicators of nail unit melanoma in adults are frequently observed in benign melanocytic hyperplasia and nevi in children. There is therefore the need to find parameters useful for clinical and dermatoscopic diagnosis in childhood nail pigmentation and to reach a consensus on management of children with a band of LM.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)79-83
Number of pages5
JournalPediatric Dermatology
Volume29
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2012
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Dermatology

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