Spitzoid melanoma

Clin Dermatol. 2009 Nov-Dec;27(6):545-55. doi: 10.1016/j.clindermatol.2008.09.013.


Because spitzoid melanoma shares many histopathologic features with Spitz nevus, it is one of the most difficult lesions to diagnose in dermatopathology. Uncertainty exists in the medical literature about how to diagnose melanocytic proliferations including Spitz nevus and spitzoid melanoma. A misdiagnosis of a melanoma as Spitz nevus is one of the most frequent causes of malpractice lawsuits in surgical pathology and dermatopathology. This contribution provides a review of the clinical presentation, histopathology, ancillary studies, treatment, and the differential diagnosis of spitzoid melanoma.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biopsy, Needle
  • Cell Transformation, Neoplastic / pathology*
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Male
  • Melanoma / diagnosis
  • Melanoma / pathology*
  • Melanoma / therapy
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness / pathology*
  • Nevus, Epithelioid and Spindle Cell / diagnosis
  • Nevus, Epithelioid and Spindle Cell / pathology*
  • Nevus, Epithelioid and Spindle Cell / therapy
  • Risk Assessment
  • Sentinel Lymph Node Biopsy
  • Skin Neoplasms / diagnosis
  • Skin Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Skin Neoplasms / therapy
  • Treatment Outcome