Current technologies for the in vivo diagnosis of cutaneous melanomas

Steven Q. Wang, Harold Rabinovitz, Alfred W. Kopf, Margaret Oliviero

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


The rising incidence of cutaneous malignant melanoma has been observed in the past decades.1,2 Currently, there is no cure for metastatic melanoma; only early diagnosis followed by prompt excision of cutaneous lesions ensures a good prognosis. The clinical ABCD rule3 is created as a framework for differentiating melanomas from benign pigmented skin lesions, and it serves as the basis for current clinical diagnosis. The ABCD rule relies on four simple clinical morphologies of melanoma: 1) Asymmetry, 2) Border irregularity, 3) Color variegation, and 4) Diameter greater than 6 mm. Although it is valuable, it has its limitations. Currently, the diagnostic accuracy for physicians is about 65%.4 This statistic implies that 1) melanomas with subtle signs are missed as benign lesions, and 2) benign lesions are over diagnosed as melanomas, which lead to unnecessary biopsies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)217-222
Number of pages6
JournalClinics in Dermatology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2004
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology


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