Correlation between super-high magnification (400x) dermoscopy and reflectance confocal microscopy for the diagnosis of melanosis and other pigmented genital lesions

Eur J Dermatol. 2024 Apr 1;34(2):131-138. doi: 10.1684/ejd.2024.4663.


The clinical diagnosis of pigmented genital lesions is challenging. Reflectance confocal microscopy (RCM) is effective for diagnosis but is limited in its application due to elevated costs. A more affordable dermatoscope with a 400x magnification (D400) has recently been brought to market. The aim of our study was to compare these two imaging techniques for the analysis of pigmented genital tumours. An observational, prospective and mono-centric study was carried out from October 2017 to May 2019, in which clinical, dermatoscopic (20x and 400x) and RCM data from 207 pigmented genital lesions were collected. The images generated via D400 and RCM were analysed by three expert investigators. Similarities between the criteria observed using D400 and RCM were evaluated by each investigator. In total, 207 lesions were included: 183 melanosis, 19 nevi, one basal cell carcinoma (BCC), two condylomas and two melanomas in situ. Our series correlates well with data found in the literature especially for the distribution of different lesions, their topography, and their aspect using x20 dermatoscopy and RCM. Pattern and cell criteria defined using RCM largely paralleled those observed with D400 for all three investigators. Correlation between D400 and RCM was moderate to strong with regards to the identification of the ring pattern and clustered round cells, strong for dendritic and plump cells, and perfect for isolated round cells and spindle cells. D400 is an easy-to-use, cost-effective alternative for the analysis of pigmented genital lesions, particularly for melanosis.

Keywords: dermatoscope with 400x magnification; melanosis; pigmented genital lesions; reflectance confocal microscopy.

Publication types

  • Observational Study
  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Carcinoma, Basal Cell / diagnostic imaging
  • Carcinoma, Basal Cell / pathology
  • Condylomata Acuminata / diagnosis
  • Condylomata Acuminata / diagnostic imaging
  • Condylomata Acuminata / pathology
  • Dermoscopy*
  • Female
  • Genital Diseases, Female / diagnostic imaging
  • Genital Diseases, Female / pathology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Melanoma / diagnostic imaging
  • Melanoma / pathology
  • Melanosis* / diagnostic imaging
  • Melanosis* / pathology
  • Microscopy, Confocal* / methods
  • Middle Aged
  • Nevus / diagnostic imaging
  • Nevus / pathology
  • Nevus, Pigmented / diagnostic imaging
  • Nevus, Pigmented / pathology
  • Prospective Studies
  • Skin Neoplasms* / diagnostic imaging
  • Skin Neoplasms* / pathology