Melanoma on chronically sun-damaged skin: Lentigo maligna and desmoplastic melanoma

Madeline E. DeWane, Andrew Kelsey, Margaret Oliviero, Harold Rabinovitz, Jane M. Grant-Kels

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


There are multiple, genetically distinct pathways that give rise to melanoma. Melanomas on sun-damaged skin (MSDS), including lentigo maligna and desmoplastic melanoma, have distinct genetic profiles and are uniquely linked to chronic ultraviolet exposure. In this article, we discuss the etiologies of lentigo maligna and desmoplastic melanoma, emerging diagnostic adjuncts that might be helpful for accurately identifying these lesions, and the clinical relevance of their frequent co-occurrence. We present unique and overlapping features of these entities and discuss challenges in MSDS management, including margin assessment, excision, and the potential role of nonsurgical therapy. Last, we address the role of immunotherapy in invasive disease. Understanding MSDS as distinct from melanoma arising on intermittently sun-exposed or sun-protected skin will ultimately help optimize patient outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)823-833
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of the American Academy of Dermatology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • dermoscopy
  • desmoplastic melanoma
  • lentigo maligna melanoma
  • melanoma
  • reflectance confocal microscopy
  • sun-damaged skin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology


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