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(US), nevus
any congenital growth or pigmented blemish on the skin; birthmark or mole



(mole, birthmark), a congenital malformation of the skin in which some areas differ in color from the rest of the skin and/or have a peculiar warty appearance. Nevi are not confined to any particular area. They can be present at birth or develop during the first few years of life or even later.

Vascular nevi, or hemangiomas, are characterized by varying sizes, uneven edges, and a pink or bluish red color. They become pale when pressed and may be flat, superficial (capillary nevi), or nodular. They are embedded in the thickest part of the skin and have an uneven cavernous surface (cavernous nevi). Verrucoid nevi occur as singular or multiple patches of different shapes, are muddy gray or brown in color, and have an uneven keratotic surface. Pigmented nevi are light brown to almost black in color; they can be the size of a pinhead, or they can cover large areas of the skin. The surfaces of pigmented nevi may be uneven and covered with hair (Becker’s nevi).

Self-treatment of pigmented spots is dangerous because frequent injury may cause them to degenerate into melanomas, whereupon the nevi enlarge, become firmer, and change color. New pigmented spots may appear in the same area, and the regional lymph nodes may become enlarged.

Electrocoagulation, cryotherapy, surgical dissection, and radiotherapy are used to treat nevi.


Shanin, A. P. “Nevusy.” In Mnogotomnoe rukovodstvo po dermatologii, vol. 3. Moscow, 1964.



A lesion containing melanocytes.
References in periodicals archive ?
Papillary dermal fibrosis is absent or only slight, and lamellar fibroplasias or concentric eosinophilic fibrosis, typical of a dysplastic nevus, is absent.
Conjunctival and uveal melanoma in the dysplastic nevus syndrome.
For each major diagnostic category of histologically ambiguous lesion (spitzoid tumors, lesions raising a differential diagnosis of an atypical nevus versus nevoid melanoma, and dysplastic nevus versus superficial spreading melanoma), Table 1 shows the initial MelanoSITE results and the final FISH result interpretation after correcting for false-positive results.
Investigators then applied the five-gene classifier to an independent set of tape-stripped specimens to confirm that it can predict whether a lesion is melanoma or a dysplastic nevus.
7% of children had sporadic dysplastic nevi and 9% had dysplastic nevus syndrome.
The initial pathology diagnosis of dysplastic nevus might have been wrong and the lesion may have been a melanoma from the start, the focus of the melanoma within a dysplastic nevus could have been missed, or a melanoma could arise from residual dysplastic nevus cells.
0%) were excised and diagnosed as compound nevus, dermal nevus, dysplastic nevus and malignant melanoma.
NYU's review of the prior biopsies revealed a compound dysplastic nevus with one fragmented margin that could not be properly evaluated on the right deltoid, and an early malignant melanoma in situ evolving in a junctional, dysplastic melanocytic nevus on the left arm.