The deep penetrating nevus

UMMS Affiliation

School of Medicine; Division of Dermatology; Department of Pediatrics



Document Type



Dermatology | Skin and Connective Tissue Diseases


The deep penetrating nevus (DPN), also known as the plexiform spindle cell nevus, is a pigmented lesion that commonly arises on the head and neck in the first few decades of life. Histopathologically, the DPN is wedge-shaped and contains melanocytes that exhibit deep infiltration into the dermis. Given these features, DPN may clinically and histopathologically mimic malignant melanoma, sparking confusion about the appropriate evaluation and management of these lesions. The goal of this review is to summarize the clinical and histopathological features of DPN and to discuss diagnostic and treatment strategies for dermatologists.

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Citation: J Am Acad Dermatol. 2014 Dec;71(6):1234-40. doi: 10.1016/j.jaad.2014.07.026. Epub 2014 Aug 28. Link to article on publisher's site

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed


deep penetrating nevus, dermatopathology, malignant melanoma, melanocytic tumor of uncertain malignant potential, nevus with focal atypical epithelioid components, plexiform spindle cell nevus

PubMed ID