Definition: It’s a malignant neoplasm originating either de novo from melanocytes, or from a benign melanocytic lesion.
Etiology: Unknown. Ultraviolet radiation is an important causative factor.
Clinical features: Primary oral melanoma is uncommon, representing 0.5-1.5% of melanomas. Clinically, it presents as a black or brown macule, plaque, Of nodule that may be ulcerated (Figs. 93, 94, 95). The lesions are usually characterized by an irregular margin and a tendency to spread. Based on clinical and histopathological criteria, It is classified into three forms: lentigo maligna melanoma (best prognosis), superficial spreading melanoma (good prognosis), and nodular melanoma (poor prognosis). The palate, upper gingiva, and alveolar mucosa are most commonly affected.
Laboratory tests: Histopathological examination.
Differential diagnosis: Pigmented nevi, ephelis, lentigo, lentigo maligna, amalgam tattoo, pyogenic granuloma, Kaposi sarcoma.
Treatment :Surgical excision, radiotherapy, chemotherapy.