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J Cutan Med Surg. 2004 Mar-Apr;8(2):103-9. Epub 2004 Mar 25.

Early detection of skin cancer by family physicians: a pilot project.

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1
University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Malignant melanoma is rising quickly in incidence and mortality rates. Family physicians (FPs) have been reported to lack confidence in diagnosing skin cancers.

OBJECTIVE:

The aim of this study was to determine whether an educational intervention can improve FPs' abilities to diagnose skin cancers.

METHODS:

The design was a prospective, randomized trial which included a skin cancer questionnaire, a video intervention, and a skin biopsy review.

RESULTS:

Pre-intervention, FPs answered 57% of the questions correctly on the skin cancer questionnaire. Post-intervention, the video intervention group scored higher than did the control group. The video intervention group removed 10% fewer benign lesions and almost 3 times more malignant lesions compared with their pre-intervention biopsy rate. No findings were statistically significant.

CONCLUSION:

An educational intervention may improve FPs' knowledge and diagnosis of skin cancer. Our results may guide future studies with larger sample sizes in developing a skin cancer continuing medical education (CME) course for FPs.

PMID:
15037942
DOI:
10.1177/120347540400800205
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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