Medline ® Abstract for Reference 47
of 'Atypical (dysplastic) nevi'
Dysplastic nevi and malignant melanoma.
Crutcher WA, Cohen PJ
Am Fam Physician. 1990;42(2):372.
The incidence of melanoma has been steadily increasing, with a trend for this tumor to develop at younger ages. The only satisfactory treatment for melanoma is early intervention; therefore, routine screening for melanoma and dysplastic nevi during the general physical examination is important. The prevalence of dysplastic nevi is estimated to be 2 to 5 percent. Patients with dysplastic nevi appear to have at least a 6 percent lifetime risk of melanoma. In the most severely affected patients (those with a family history of dysplastic nevi and more than one melanoma), the lifetime risk may exceed 50 percent. Patients with dysplastic nevi merit periodic follow-up. Since these nevi tend to be familial, close relatives of affected patients may also benefit from a screening examination. Individuals at increased risk for melanoma may display one or more of the following risk factors: dysplastic nevi, freckling, tendency to sunburn and numerous common nevi. Such individuals may benefit most from education in sunburn avoidance, sunscreen use and self-examination for changing nevi. A better informed public and heightened physician awareness are the most effective means of reducing mortality from this virulent malignancy.
Children's Hospital of San Franscisco, California.