Nevus: Congenital Melanocytic Nevus

Nevus (pronounced knee-vus), a Latin word meaning “birthmark,” or “mole,” is a general term for a congenital mark on the skin. Pigmented nevi present from birth that usually include one or more giant lesions greater than 20 cm and up to over 60 cm in diameter that mar or may not be hairy; individuals with very large nevi are at higher risk for developing melanoma. Small melanocytic nevi are very common. One in every 50 to 100 people is born with a small melanocytic nevus. Large congenital nevi are more rare and occur approximately once in every 20,000 births. Giant congenital nevi are thought to occur approximately once in every 500,000 births. (Nevus Outreach)

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