Analysis of globule types in malignant melanoma

Jin Xu, Kapil Gupta, William V. Stoecker, Yamini Krishnamurthy, Harold S. Rabinovitz, Austin Bangert, David Calcara, Margaret Oliviero, Joseph M. Malters, Rhett Drugge, R. Joe Stanley, Randy H. Moss, M. Emre Celebi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Objective: To identify and analyze subtypes of globules based on size, shape, network connectedness, pigmentation, and distribution to determine which globule types and globule distributions are most frequently associated with a diagnosis of malignant melanoma. Design: Retrospective case series of dermoscopy images with globules. Setting: Private dermatology practices. Participants: Patients in dermatology practices. Intervention: Observation only. Main Outcome Measure: Association of globule types with malignant melanoma. Results: The presence of large globules (odds ratio [OR], 5.25) and globules varying in size (4.72) or shape (5.37) had the highest ORs for malignant melanoma among all globule types and combinations studied. Classical globules (dark, discrete, convex, and 0.10-0.20 mm) had a higher risk (OR, 4.20) than irregularly shaped globules (dark, discrete, and not generally convex) (2.89). Globules connected to other structures were not significant in the diagnosis of malignant melanoma. Of the different configurations studied, asymmetric clusters have the highest risk (OR, 3.02). Conclusions: The presence of globules of varying size or shape seems to be more associated with a diagnosis of malignant melanoma than any other globule type or distribution in this study. Large globules are of particular importance in the diagnosis of malignant melanoma.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1245-1251
Number of pages7
JournalArchives of Dermatology
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2009
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology


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