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Alternative Names Return to topMongolian spots; Congenital dermal melanocytosis; Dermal melanocytosis
Definition Return to top
Mongolian spots are flat, blue, or blue-gray skin markings that commonly appear at birth or shortly thereafter.
See also: Rashes
Causes Return to top
Mongolian blue spots are common among darker skinned persons, such as those who are of Asian, East Indian, and African descent.
Symptoms Return to top
Mongolian spots are noncancerous skin markings and are not associated with disease. The markings may cover a large area of the back.
Occasionally, Mongolian blue spots are mistaken for bruises, which can raise a question about possible child abuse. It is important to recognize that Mongolian blue spots are birthmarks, NOT bruises.
Exams and Tests Return to top
No tests are needed. Your doctor can diagnose this condition by looking at the skin.
Treatment Return to top
No treatment is necessary or recommended.
Outlook (Prognosis) Return to top
The spots often fade in a few years and are almost always gone by adolescence.
Possible Complications Return to top
There are no complications.
When to Contact a Medical Professional Return to top
All birthmarks should be examined by a health care provider during the routine newborn examination.Update Date: 4/10/2009 Updated by: Kevin Berman, MD, PhD, Atlanta Center for Dermatologic Disease, Atlanta, GA. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.