Recurrence of moderately dysplastic nevi with positive histologic margins

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The Pigmented Lesion Subcommittee of the Melanoma Prevention Working Group recently published a consensus statement that incompletely excised moderately dysplastic nevi (MDN) without clinical residual pigmentation can be observed and not re-excised. However, data regarding recurrence of MDN with positive histologic margins are quite scant.


We sought to extend the reported findings with a study to determine the recurrence rate of MDN with positive histologic margins.


We performed a retrospective study on MDN with positive histologic margins that were not re-excised and for which at least 1 year of clinical follow-up was available.


We found a total of 147 such nevi from January 1, 2007, to December 31, 2013. Six MDN (5 compound and 1 junctional) or 4% recurred with an average recurrence time of 1.7 years. All of these MDN were evaluated by shave biopsies.


Subjectivity in grading of atypia is a limitation of this study.


These data from a large study focusing exclusively on recurrence of MDN with positive histologic margins support the conclusion of the Pigmented Lesion Subcommittee that incompletely excised MDN do not require re-excision.

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