Delay in the diagnosis of oral squamous cell carcinoma.

Department of Otolaryngology, Aarhus University Hospital, Denmark.
Clinical Otolaryngology (Impact Factor: 2.39). 03/1995; 20(1):21-5. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2273.1995.tb00006.x
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Delay in diagnosis was recorded prospectively in 167 patients with an oral squamous cell carcinoma. The median total delay was 4 months of which two-thirds was patient delay. The corrected survival did not correlate with the total delay. The patient delay was not significantly correlated with tumour or patient factors and the unreliable nature of patient delay information makes such data clinically unusable. In contrast, the professional delay correlated significantly with some of these factors. The delay was longer for women than for men and the older the patient, the longer the delay. The professional delay was longest in patients with small tumours. Thus, registration of the professional delay provides information to be used to improve the diagnostic efficiency of the health care system.