Send to

Choose Destination
Coll Antropol. 2010 Apr;34 Suppl 2:85-8.

Senile lentigo--cosmetic or medical issue of the elderly population.

Author information

Department of Dermatology and Venereology, University Hospital Sestre Milosrdnice, Zagreb, Croatia.


Senile lentigo or age spots are hyperpigmented macules of skin that occur in irregular shapes, appearing most commonly in the sun-exposed areas of the skin such as on the face and back of the hands. Senile lentigo is a common component of photoaged skin and is seen most commonly after the age of 50. There are many disscusions on whether senile lentigo represents a melanoma precursor, namely lentigo maligna melanoma and, if there is a need for a regular follow up in cases of multiple lesions. Clinical observations sometimes report that in the location of the newly diagnosed melanoma, such lesion preexsisted. On contrary, some authors believe that senile lentigo represents a precursor of seborrheic keratosis, which does not require a serious medical treatment. However, the observation of the possible association of senile lentigo with the melanoma development makes us cautious in the assessment of this lesion. Histologically, there are elongated rete ridges with increased melanin at the tips, and the number of melanocytes is not increased. The dermatoscopic features are also distinctive. If the lesion becomes inflammed it may evolve into benign lichenoid keratosis. Cryotherapy and laser treatment are common therapeutic approaches. Sun protection creams may be useful in early lesions.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Loading ...
Support Center