We shouldn't accept vague terminology in pathology reports

Melanoma is less likely to be detected if doctors delegate and trivialise scalp checks

The term dysplastic naevus (DN) is a convenient diagnostic label for the majority of melanocytic lesions presented to pathologists in Australasia.

But, although the WHO designated specific criteria for histological diagnosis of DN in 1992, these are not used consistently. Therefore, there is no useful concordance between pathologists on degrees of dysplasia.

In some cases the category DN is used to camouflage a pathologist’s uncertainty, as evidenced by reports such as “severely dysplastic naevus — excision with 5mm margins would be prudent”.

It is suggested that GPs encourage their