Is Melanocytic Nervus a Normal Mole?

Hello. I had a mole removed and the biopsy result came as "melanocytic nevus, lentiginous type with moderate cytologic atypia, completely excised". Is that something to worry about? Should I be concerned about moderate cytologic atypia? The nurse only said that it's fine, but my doctor is out of town at the moment and I would appreciate your expert opinion. Thank you.

Doctor Answers 5

Pathology description of a mole

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Melanocytic nevus just means a regular mole, although it sounds like your mole was dysplastic which just means it had more potential of developing into a melanoma and so it is good that is was excised, and completely as in your case. Periodic checks with a dermatologist to ensure you don't have or develop more of these types of moles is a good idea, and ofcourse sun protection and tanning salon avoidance. Dr. Benjamin Barankin, Toronto Dermatology Centre.

Toronto Dermatologic Surgeon

A melanocytic nevus is a normal mole

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A melanocytic nevus is a normal mole.  Because your mole had moderate cytologic atypia, many pathologists would call it a dysplastic mole, which is normal in itself, but perhaps has the potential to develop into a melanoma.  Since your mole has been completely excised, you do not need to worry about it; however, you may develop additional dysplastic moles so you should monitor your skin monthly, use sun protection, and visit your dermatologist in 6 months.  He will discuss maintenance follow-up appointments.

Martie Gidon, MD, FRCPC
Toronto Dermatologist

A melanocytic nevus is a normal mole

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Although the term melanocytic nevus refers to a normal mole, yours was reported as having "moderate cytologic atypia" which means it may have been a mole that is at risk of developing into a melanoma over time. Since it has been completely excised it should not pose any further risks. In our office, we follow all of our "atypical mole" patients by doing full skin examinations every six months. I recommend you see a board certified dermatologist for your follow-up examinations twice yearly. As these growths are pre-cancerous, you do not need to visit an oncologist.

You can follow the video link below to learn more about identifying the changes in moles that are suspicious for skin cancer.

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A Moderately Atypical Nevus Is Not A Melanoma.

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A moderately atypical nevus is not a melanoma. However, some feel that such nevi can become melanoma and therefore should be removed. Your mole looks like it has been excised – so you should be fine. Discuss this with your dermatologist.

Melanocytic nevus is a mole

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Yes it is the more technical term. Completely excised is a subjective term. This is based on the margins that they have seen. Sometimes the margins taken and the size of this is a better determinant. I would keep an eye on this forever.

Philip Young, MD
Bellevue Facial Plastic Surgeon

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.