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Keywords:

  • acral lentiginous melanoma;
  • antebrachial flap;
  • conservative surgical treatment

Abstract

Surgical treatment for acral lentiginous melanoma (ALM) is usually radical and severely invalidating, given its distinctly aggressive nature and poor prognosis. We report on a 76-year-old male patient with ALM of the left thumb who refused total amputation that would limit his gripping function. A “surgical degloving” was consequently performed, followed by plastic reconstruction with a radial antebrachial (the so-called Chinese) flap. A year after surgery, the patient was able to perform most finalized thumb movements without difficulty, and no metastases were recorded over a 5-year follow-up. The authors discuss the indications for such a treatment for thinner ALM in relation to the biological behavior of ALM.