Peripunctal melanocytic nevi. Distinctive clinical findings and differential diagnosis

Ophthalmology. 1989 Jul;96(7):994-8.


A peripunctal nevus is a rare lesion of the eyelid margin, six examples of which are included in this report. The lesions all involved the lower punctum and had been present for many years without producing epiphora. In addition to their variable clinical pigmentation and translucent appearance on biomicroscopy, all shared several other diagnostically useful clinical features: an overall dome-shape with a fine micronodularity; a prominent ramifying vascularity; and, most importantly, circumferentially swollen punctal lips that created a slit-like punctal orifice. Histopathologically, the lesions were predominantly or exclusively subepithelial melanocytic nevi and were demonstrated not to compress the punctum or canaliculus. Infiltration of the nevus cells within the orbicularis striated muscle fibers was a common finding owing to the latter's superficial location in the eyelids. If patients request excision for cosmetic reasons, these lesions are best managed by a horizontal circular shave excision with the temporary placement of a silicon punctual plug. The differential diagnosis includes cyst, papilloma, melanoma, and basal cell carcinoma.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Carcinoma, Basal Cell / diagnosis
  • Child
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Epithelium
  • Eyelid Neoplasms / diagnosis
  • Eyelid Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Eyelid Neoplasms / surgery
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Melanoma / diagnosis
  • Melanoma / pathology*
  • Melanoma / surgery
  • Middle Aged
  • Nevus, Pigmented / diagnosis
  • Nevus, Pigmented / pathology*
  • Nevus, Pigmented / surgery
  • Papilloma / diagnosis