Posted By
4/27/2011 8:09am
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Replies: 4

My newly diagnosed melanoma (3a) is giving me a bigger headache!  Took my son to dermatologist for his "body check" because of his momma's diagnosis.  Doctor took two not so cute moles off, told me dont worry they are really nothing to worry about and to call in a week.

Dr. office calls last night and tells me that they are compound melanocytic nevus' and that he needs to be watched more carefully now.  Also that the only thing we need to do is watch the area and to make sure that no pigment grows back.  Does that sound correct to all of you warriors out there?  I am sick to my stomach about it however, thanking God that I am taking my kids for this yearly check up and catching whatever may be a problem.

I have a path report and can give more info if needed.  It does also say that the 'architectural growth pattern is compatible with dysplastic melanocytic nevus.  there is mild cytologic atypia of melanocytes'


Have they decided to take a wider margin?  This is basically an atypical mole, if they thought it was in the next category - severe, they would have done an additional wide excision similar to what they do for an insitu. I have several that have been removed while checking for additional primaries that have been called compound melanocytic nevus. This is not something to worry about. This does mean that your sons skin should be checked. Set him up on a regular basis to see the dermatologist. 

Once diagnosed we tend to see issues on everyone! 

Be thankful that this is now gone and not an issue.


From what I have read, it sounds like you have been given correct advice. Here are a couple of
links to info on dysplastic nevus:

Frank from Australia

I urge everyone to thoroughly educate themselves about melanoma. No part of this post should be considered to constitute any form of medical advice. Please consult a competent oncologist. (I think that prayer can help in ways that we don't always expect).

Are you talking about the pathology diagnosis of both moles?

The term "Compound melanocytic nevus" is basically a mole with nevus cells (melanocytes). This is basically a mole.

The terms "dysplastic melanocytic nevus" and  "there is mild cytologic atypia of melanocytes" basically means that the mole is what is called a atypical mole or dysplastic nevus (they are the same) This is not melanoma. Dysplastic nevi are graded as mild, moderate and severe. Mild is usually watched, moderate may be condidered for for re-excision, and severe is always re-excised and checked for clear margins. Your sons is graded as mild, and most derms watch it.

 A dysplastic nevus is basically a mole whose appearance is different from that of common moles. It is estimated that one out of every 10 Americans has at least one atypical mole. It is also estimated that about 50% of patients that have been diagnosed with melanoma also have at least one atypical mole (that's me!)

Not everyone who has atypical moles gets melanoma either. Just because your sons mole was mildly atypical does not mean it will ever become melanoma.  In fact, most moles -- both ordinary and
atypical ones -- never do become cancerous.

Long story short, this is not melanoma, so try not to worry yourself.


This information is for general patient educational & information purposes only. It should not be used for diagnosing/treating a health problem or disease. If you have or suspect you may have a health problem, you should consult your healthcare provider.

Thank you all for your input.!  I feel much better about this now.  I am thankful that we are on close watch (as he and my daughter will be on close watch forever )    I will be taking his report to my appointment next month.