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Br J Dermatol. 2001 Aug;145(2):327-9.

Metastatic melanoma to the palatine tonsil with a favourable prognosis.

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Department of Dermatology, Kumamoto University School of Medicine, Honjo, Kumamoto 860-8556, Japan.


Metastasis to the oral cavity from cutaneous melanoma is rare: fewer than 30 cases of metastatic melanoma to the palatine tonsil have been reported. Tonsil metastasis is haematogenously disseminated and therefore usually has a poor prognosis. We present a case of metastatic melanoma to the palatine tonsil occurring 6(1/2) years after removal of the primary cutaneous lesion. The patient has remained disease-free for 18 months since the removal of skin and tonsil metastases. Immunohistopathologically, HLA class II and costimulatory factor B7-2 molecules were concomitantly expressed on melanoma cells: we suggest that the patient was therefore able to develop antimelanoma T-cell activation resulting in prevention of further metastasis, and thus a favourable prognosis.

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