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Br J Cancer. 2010 Nov 9;103(10):1502-9. doi: 10.1038/sj.bjc.6605942. Epub 2010 Oct 26.

Skin cancer screening behaviours among individuals with a strong family history of malignant melanoma.

Author information

1
School of Women's and Children's Health, Faculty of Medicine, University of New South Wales, Kensington, NSW 2052, Australia. N.Kasparian@unsw.edu.au

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

This study examined the prevalence and correlates of skin cancer screening behaviours among individuals at high risk of developing melanoma due to strong family history.

METHODS:

A total of 120 individuals with a known family-specific CDKN2A mutation (72% response rate) completed a self-report questionnaire assessing annual frequency of skin self-examination (SSE), clinical skin examination (CSE) and a variety of potential demographic, clinical and psychosocial correlates.

RESULTS:

In the past 12 months, 50% of participants reported engaging in SSE at least four times, and 43% of participants had undergone at least one CSE. Engagement in SSE was associated with doctor recommendation (β=1.77, P=0.001), confidence in one's ability to perform SSE (β=1.44, P<0.0001), positive beliefs about melanoma treatment (β=0.77, P=0.002) and intention to perform SSE in the future (β=1.69, P<0.0001). These variables accounted for 59% of the variance in SSE behaviour. Further, information-seeking style moderated the relationship between anxiety and SSE (β=1.02, P=0.004). Annual uptake of CSE was associated with doctor recommendation (β=2.21, P<0.0001) and intention to undergo CSE in the future (β=1.19, P=0.001).

CONCLUSION:

In comparison with clinical guidelines, it appears that individuals at high risk of developing melanoma engage in suboptimal levels of skin surveillance. Improved doctor-patient communication, as well as psycho-education and behavioural support, may be viable means of improving early skin cancer detection behaviours in this high-risk population.

PMID:
20978504
PMCID:
PMC2990585
DOI:
10.1038/sj.bjc.6605942
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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