By Gary M. White, MD

Pigmented epithelioid melanocytoma, aka animal-type melanoma, is an uncommon variant of melanoma characterized by a high rate of regional metastases, but limited evidence of distant metastases or disease-related death.


The PEM typically presents as a solitary, darkly pigmented nodule on the scalp, face, neck, arms or trunk.


The standard treatment of melanoma with wide excision and sentinel lymph node biopsy is recommended. Further research is needed to determine if PEM should be treated in any way different from standard melanoma.


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