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Cutaneous Melanomas Arising during Childhood: An Overview of the Main Entities

Abstract : Cutaneous melanomas are exceptional in children and represent a variety of clinical situations, each with a different prognosis. In congenital nevi, the risk of transformation is correlated with the size of the nevus. The most frequent type is lateral transformation, extremely rare before puberty, reminiscent of a superficial spreading melanoma (SSM) ex-nevus. Deep nodular transformation is much rarer, can occur before puberty, and must be distinguished from benign proliferative nodules. Superficial spreading melanoma can also arise within small nevi, which were not visible at birth, usually after puberty, and can reveal a cancer predisposition syndrome (CDKN2A or CDK4 germline mutations). Prognosis is correlated with classical histoprognostic features (mainly Breslow thickness). Spitz tumors are frequent in adolescents and encompass benign (Spitz nevus), intermediate (atypical Spitz tumor), and malignant forms (malignant Spitz tumor). The whole spectrum is characterized by specific morphology with spindled and epithelioid cells, genetic features, and an overall favorable outcome even if a regional lymph node is involved. Nevoid melanomas are rare and difficult to diagnose clinically and histologically. They can arise in late adolescence. Their prognosis is currently not very well ascertained. A small group of melanomas remains unclassified after histological and molecular assessment.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, August 3, 2021 - 8:44:48 AM
Last modification on : Thursday, August 5, 2021 - 3:23:41 AM

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Arnaud de la Fouchardière, Felix Boivin, Heather Etchevers, Nicolas Macagno. Cutaneous Melanomas Arising during Childhood: An Overview of the Main Entities. Dermatopathology, MDPI, 2021, 8 (3), pp.301-314. ⟨10.3390/dermatopathology8030036⟩. ⟨hal-03312882⟩

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