Ambiguous melanocytic lesions: A retrospective cohort study of incidence and outcome of melanocytic tumor of uncertain malignant potential and superficial atypical melanocytic proliferation of uncertain significance in the Netherlands

Jiahe Vermariën-Wang, Thom Doeleman*, Remco van Doorn, Antien L. Mooyaart, Willeke A.M. Blokx, Anne M.R. Schrader

*Corresponding author for this work

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Abstract

Background: Melanocytic tumor of uncertain malignant potential (MELTUMP) and superficial atypical melanocytic proliferation of uncertain significance (SAMPUS) are descriptive and provisional terms for melanocytic tumors with ambiguous histopathological features that are not easily classified as either benign or malignant. Objective: To investigate the incidence and clinical outcome of MELTUMP and SAMPUS in the Netherlands. Methods: In this retrospective cohort study, we reviewed all diagnoses of MELTUMP and SAMPUS from the Dutch Nationwide Pathology Databank from 1991 to October 1, 2021. Clinical outcome was studied for cases diagnosed until October 1, 2018. Results: A total of 1685 MELTUMP and 1957 SAMPUS were identified with an annual incidence of 150 to 300 cases. Metastatic behavior was seen in 0.7% of all initially diagnosed MELTUMP. All SAMPUS remained free of metastases. Limitations: Reassessment of pathology slides and confirmation of clonality between primary and metastatic lesions remained outside the scope of this study. Conclusion: Despite the ‘uncertainty’ in the nomenclature, our results demonstrate a low malignant potential for MELTUMP and no malignant potential for SAMPUS. We emphasize the importance of consultation for ambiguous melanocytic lesions and to limit the MELTUMP/SAMPUS terminology to legitimately uncertain or unclassifiable cases.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of the American Academy of Dermatology
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 17 Nov 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Doeleman had full access to all of the data in the study and takes responsibility for the integrity of the data and the accuracy of the data analysis.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 American Academy of Dermatology, Inc.

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