Content » Vol 99, Issue 12

Investigative Report

Solar Lentigines are Associated with Better Outcome in Cutaneous Melanoma

Vivien Marasigan, Canan Güvenç, Joost J. van den Oord, Marguerite Stas, Veerle Boecxstaens, Oliver Bechter, Pascal Wolter, Diether Lambrechts, Marjan Garmyn
DOI: 10.2340/00015555-3270


The rising incidence of cutaneous melanoma and its stable high mortality rates despite innovative cancer care, require better prediction of the clinical outcome. In a large cutaneous melanoma population we explored whether the known clinical risk factors for melanoma susceptibility (naevus phenotype, phototype, family and personal history of melanoma and sun damage) affect melanoma outcomes. A total of 1,530 melanoma patients were included. Multivariable analysis adjusted for age, sex, melanoma stage, localization and subtype showed that familial melanoma, solar lentigines on head and neck, the back of hands, arms and shoulders were associated with a better relapse free survival. The presence of atypical naevi was associated with an increased risk of relapse. After Bonferroni correction, the correlation between presence of solar lentigines on the back of the hands and arms remained the most robust and significant prognostic factor for the relapse-free survival in cutaneous melanoma patients.


This explorative study in a large carefully phenotyped melanoma population demonstrates that melanoma susceptibility risk factors, indicative of chronic photodamage, are correlated with clinical outcome. The presence of solar lentigines on the back of the hands and arms is associated with a better relapse free survival. This finding may offer clinicians an additional tool to risk stratify their melanoma patients.

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