Skin Conditions

Congenital Nevi

Facts About Congenital Nevi

Congenital nevi is a term used to describe a group of birthmarks that appear on the skin of an infant. It is not known what causes birthmarks, and there is no way to prevent them from forming in the womb. Different types of nevi can range in size from a pinpoint to a mark that covers half of the body. Moles, strawberry birthmarks, stork bites, port wine stains, and Mongolian spots are all types of nevi.
Birthmarks can be light tan, purple, blue, dark brown, red, pink, or deep red to black in color. They can be raised or flat, and irregular or uniform in shape. If a large number of nevi or one single large nevus is present, the child needs to be evaluated by a physician.

Congenital Nevi Challenges

  • Children with birthmarks may be prone to skin cancers. Wearing sunscreen, limiting exposure time in direct sunlight, and undergoing regular checkups with a physician can prevent cancerous lesions from forming or progressing. If any nevus changes in shape, color, or size, a physician should monitor it.
  • If the edges of the birthmark become irregular in shape or discomfort develops, a physician should inspect the area, possibly removing it and evaluating it for cancerous cells.

Congenital Nevi Treatment

Congenital nevi are not harmful to a child and usually do not require intervention by a physician. Prominent nevi or those located on the face may cause social problems for the child or result in an altered sense of body image. Support groups and counseling may ensure the emotional well-being of the child.

Resources for Congenital Nevi


Congenital Nevi
Congenital Nevi