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J Am Acad Dermatol. 1997 Dec;37(6):953-7.

Family physicians' knowledge of malignant melanoma.

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1
University of Toronto, Ontario.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The incidence and mortality of melanoma have been increasing during the past two decades. Melanoma is relatively easy to detect and, when diagnosed early, is curable.

OBJECTIVE:

Our purpose was to assess the baseline knowledge of malignant melanoma among family practitioners and to identify their preferred method of learning new information about the skin.

METHODS:

The design was a randomized survey by mailed questionnaire.

RESULTS:

More than 50% of physicians stated they lacked confidence in being able to recognize melanoma. Family physicians were well informed on factors affecting prognosis, but knowledge deficits were identified on history, physical examination, and risk factors. The most effective method of learning new information about the skin was hands-on teaching demonstration.

CONCLUSION:

Many family physicians are not confident in their ability to recognize melanoma, and knowledge deficits were identified. In addition, some important risk factors were not well recognized. Thus, those at highest risk may not be receiving education on early detection that may help decrease the incidence and mortality of melanoma.

PMID:
9418763
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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