This inconspicuous red dermal papule on the upper chest turned out, on biopsy, to be a primary dermal melanoma.
Primary dermal melanoma

Primary dermal melanoma (PDM) is a rare variant of melanoma confined to the dermis without an epidermal component [JAAD 2014;71;1083]. Differentiation of PDM from metastatic melanoma is critical, but often hard to do. The other possibility is classic melanoma with regression of the epidermal component.


The PDM may occur anywhere on the skin. Lesions may be black, brown, blue, pink, white, or skin-colored. The clinical diagnosis at the time of biopsy has included melanoma, nevus, BCC, SCC, dermatofibroma, cyst neurofibroma, and scar. Male and female patients are equally likely.


Wide surgical excision should be done. Sentinel node biopsy is often performed along with PET/CT scan or other workup for metastatic disease. For true PDM, 5-year survival has been reported at 80-100%.

Additional Pictures

Primary dermal melanoma


Homepage | FAQs | Contact Dr. White

It is not the intention of to provide specific medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. only intends to provide users with information regarding various medical conditions for educational purposes and will not provide specific medical advice. Information on is not intended as a substitute for seeking medical treatment and you should always seek the advice of a qualified healthcare provider for diagnosis and for answers to your individual questions. Information contained on should never cause you to disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking treatment. If you live in the United States and believe you are having a medical emergency call 911 immediately.