Atypical network

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 Editor: Ralph P. Braun

Author(s): Ralph P. Braun, Katrin Kerl
Description This chapter covers histopathological correlation of atypical pigment network in dermoscopy
Author(s) Katrin Kerl · Ralph P. Braun
Responsible author Ralph Braun→ send e-mail
Status unknown
Status update July 2, 2018
Status by Ralph P. Braun

The atypical network is irregularly meshed with lines that vary in width and degree of pigmentation and with “holes” that are heterogeneous in area and shape. An atypical network shows foci with broader and darker pigmented lines; the network often ends abruptly at the lesion’s periphery. An atypical network within a lesion may also appear perturbed and broken up, a finding referred to as “branched streaks”.

Atypical network31.jpg

An example of an atypical pigment network clinically and dermoscopically:

Atypical network.jpg

On histolopathology, the irregular lines of an atypical network correspond to variation in the width, length, and spacing of the rete ridges due to variation in the size, spacing, and tendency to confluence of melanocytic nests. Rete ridges that are elongated and widened by larger junctional nests of melanocytes would appear as darker and wider lines on dermoscopy [1]. The atypical network is often seen in melanoma and dysplastic nevi [2] .


  1. Russo et al.: Dermoscopy pathology correlation in melanoma. J. Dermatol. 2017;44:507-514. PMID: 28447355. DOI.
  2. Kittler et al.: Standardization of terminology in dermoscopy/dermatoscopy: Results of the third consensus conference of the International Society of Dermoscopy. J. Am. Acad. Dermatol. 2016;74:1093-106. PMID: 26896294. DOI.