What Is Lentigo Maligna?

Q:
What is lentigo maligna?

A:
Lentigo maligna, or Hutchinson melanotic freckle, is a precursor to lentigo maligna melanoma which is a potentially serious form of skin cancer. Hence, it is often reported as “in situ” melanoma. It occurs in sun damaged skin so is generally found on the face or neck, particularly the nose and cheek. It grows slowly in diameter over 5 to 20 years or longer.

Lentigo maligna is a proliferation of malignant pigment cells, but what triggers the cells to become malignant is unknown. The condition occurs more commonly in males than females. The majority of patients are older than 40, and the peak age of diagnosis is be between 60 and 80 years.

Lentigo maligna

Like other flat forms of melanoma, its features follows the ABCDE rule: Asymmetry, Border irregularity, Colour variation, large Diameter and Evolving. Its characteristics include:

  • Large size: >6 mm and often several centimetres in diameter at diagnosis
  • Irregular shape
  • Variable pigmentation – colours may include light brown or tan, dark brown, pink, red or
  • white
  • Smooth surface.

If you have any questions, please consult your doctor.

 

Keywords: lentigo maligna