"Gloves-and-socks" melanoma: Does histology make a difference?

Ethan Soudry, Haim Gutman, Meora Feinmesser, Roee Gutman*, Jacob Schachter

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACKGROUND: Acral lentiginous melanoma (ALM) is associated with low survival. OBJECTIVE: The aim of the study was to compare the clinical course of ALM, non-ALM hand and foot melanoma, and melanoma of the extremities in nonacral locations. METHODS: Data on 168 patients operated on for cutaneous melanoma of the extremities from 1993 to 2005 were examined. Twenty-nine had ALM, 16 non-ALM, and 123 other-extremity melanoma. All known melanoma prognosticators were analyzed for their impact on survival at a median of 53 months' follow-up. RESULTS: The ALM group was significantly older (p=.015). No differences between the ALM and non-ALM groups were noted in tumor characteristics, lymph node status, and survival. However, the other-extremity melanoma group presented with significantly thinner lesions, fewer positive sentinel lymph nodes, and lower tumor stage and, consequently, had significantly better disease-specific and disease-free survival (p=.006, p=.0001). The acral lesions were nearly free of peritumoral lymphocytic infiltration. Multivariate analysis identified only tumor thickness (p=.0127), stage (p=.00001), and patient age (p=.012) as independent prognosticators of disease-specific survival. CONCLUSION: Cutaneous melanomas in acral sites, regardless of histology, tend to be diagnosed at an advanced stage probably owing to older patient age, difficult-to-see sites, and biologic factors, leading to reduced patient survival. The authors have indicated no significant interest with commercial supporters.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1372-1378
Number of pages7
JournalDermatologic Surgery
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2008


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