Monitoring of kindreds with hereditary predisposition for cutaneous melanoma and dysplastic nevus syndrome: results of a Swedish preventive program.J Clin Oncol. 2007 Jul 01; 25(19):2819-24.JC
To evaluate a program initiated in 1987 by the Swedish Melanoma Study Group aiming to provide preventive surveillance to kindreds with hereditary cutaneous melanoma and dysplastic nevus syndrome.
PATIENTS AND METHODS
Overall, 2,080 individuals belonging to 280 melanoma families were followed for 14 years between 1987 and 2001 at 12 participating centers. Data were registered in a central database.
Among 1,912 skin lesions excised during follow-up, 41 melanomas were removed in 32 individuals. Of these, 15 (37%) were in situ melanomas and 26 (63%) invasive melanomas. The median tumor thickness of invasive melanomas was 0.5 mm. Ulceration was absent in 24 of 26 invasive melanomas (92%) and 12 (46%) lacked vertical growth phase. Compared with melanomas in the general Swedish population, the melanomas identified in these kindreds during follow-up had better prognostic characteristics. All melanomas except one were diagnosed in families with two or more first-degree relatives with melanoma. Diagnosis of melanoma occurred in three of eight kindreds with germline CDKN2A mutations, supporting that families with such mutations are at increased risk for melanoma development. Of the 32 individuals who developed melanoma during follow-up, 21 (66%) had had at least one previously diagnosed melanoma.
This study shows that a coordinated program aimed at detecting and offering skin surveillance in kindreds with hereditary cutaneous melanoma results in a low incidence of melanomas during the follow-up period and that the tumors that do arise have favorable prognostic characteristics.