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Pigmented Squamous Cell Carcinoma

Satter, Elizabeth K MD, MPH

The American Journal of Dermatopathology: October 2007 - Volume 29 - Issue 5 - p 486-489
doi: 10.1097/DAD.0b013e318156d756
Brief Report

Although dendritic, melanin-containing melanocytes can be seen in a variety of epithelial neoplasms, only 0.01% to 7% of all squamous cell carcinomas (SCC) are pigmented. Furthermore, most reported cases have occurred in the oral and ocular mucosa, with relatively few cases reported to originate in the skin. Herein we report a case of a 61-year-old Caucasian male who presented with a large blue-black nodule on his left cheek, clinically suspicious for a melanoma; however, histological evaluation revealed an acantholytic pigmented squamous cell carcinoma. Previous cases are reviewed and the clinical and histological differential diagnoses are discussed.

From the Department of Dermatology and Dermatopathology, Naval Medical Center, San Diego, CA.

The authors report no conflicts of interest. The views expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Navy, Department of Defense, or the United States Government.

Reprints: Elizabeth K. Satter, MD, MPH, Department of Dermatology and Dermatopathology, Naval Medical Center 34520 Bob Wilson Drive Suite 300 San Diego, Ca 92134-2300 (e-mail:

© 2007 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.