The spectrum of dermatoscopic patterns in blue nevi.


BACKGROUND Blue nevi are congenital or acquired, dermal dendritic melanocytic proliferations that can simulate melanocytic and nonmelanocytic lesions including melanoma, cutaneous metastasis of melanoma, Spitz/Reed nevi, and basal cell carcinoma. OBJECTIVE We sought to investigate global and local dermatoscopic patterns of blue nevi compared with melanomas and basal cell carcinomas. METHODS We retrospectively analyzed global and local features in 95 dermatoscopic images of blue nevi and in 190 melanomas and basal cell carcinomas that were selected as control lesions on the basis of similar pigmentation. Lesion pigmentation was classified as monochromatic, dichromatic, or multichromatic. RESULTS A global pattern characterized by homogeneous pigmentation was observed in all of 95 (100%) blue nevi. Eighty of 95 (84.2%) blue nevi presented a homogeneous pattern consisting of one color (blue, black, or brown) or two colors (blue-brown, blue-gray, or blue-black). Fifteen of 95 (15.8%) blue nevi had a multichromatic (blue, gray, black, brown, and/or red) pigmentation. In all, 47 of 95 (49.5%) blue nevi were characterized by pigmentation in the absence of pigment network or any other local dermatoscopic features. And 48 of 95 (50.5%) blue nevi showed local dermatoscopic patterns including whitish scarlike depigmentation, dots/globules, vascular pattern, streaks, and networklike pattern. LIMITATIONS The study was retrospective and involved only Caucasian people of Italian origin. CONCLUSION The characteristic feature of blue nevi is a homogeneous pigmentation that is blue, blue-gray, blue-brown, or blue-black. We showed that a wide spectrum of local dermatoscopic features (whitish scarlike depigmentation, dots/globules, peripheral streaks or vessels) may also be present. In such cases, clinical and dermatoscopic distinction from melanoma or nonmelanocytic lesions may be difficult or impossible, and surgical excision is necessary.

DOI: 10.1016/j.jaad.2011.08.018

Cite this paper

@article{Cesare2012TheSO, title={The spectrum of dermatoscopic patterns in blue nevi.}, author={Antonella Di Cesare and Francesco Sera and Andrea Gulia and Gino Coletti and Tamara Micantonio and Maria Concetta Fargnoli and Ketty Peris}, journal={Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology}, year={2012}, volume={67 2}, pages={199-205} }