Dermoscopy improves accuracy of primary care physicians to triage lesions suggestive of skin cancer.
ABSTRACT Primary care physicians (PCPs) constitute an appropriate target for new interventions and educational campaigns designed to increase skin cancer screening and prevention. The aim of this randomized study was to determine whether the adjunct of dermoscopy to the standard clinical examination improves the accuracy of PCPs to triage lesions suggestive of skin cancer.
PCPs in Barcelona, Spain, and Naples, Italy, were given a 1-day training course in skin cancer detection and dermoscopic evaluation, and were randomly assigned to the dermoscopy evaluation arm or naked-eye evaluation arm. During a 16-month period, 73 physicians evaluated 2,522 patients with skin lesions who attended their clinics and scored individual lesions as benign or suggestive of skin cancer. All patients were re-evaluated by expert dermatologists at clinics for pigmented lesions. Referral accuracy of both PCP groups was calculated by their scores, which were compared to those tabulated for dermatologists.
Referral sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative predictive values were 54.1%, 71.3%, 11.3%, and 95.8%, respectively, in the naked-eye arm, and 79.2%, 71.8%, 16.1%, and 98.1%, respectively, in the dermoscopy arm. Significant differences were found in terms of sensitivity and negative predictive value (P = .002 and P = .004, respectively). Histopathologic examination of equivocal lesions revealed 23 malignant skin tumors missed by PCPs performing naked-eye observation and only six by PCPs using dermoscopy (P = .002).
The use of dermoscopy improves the ability of PCPs to triage lesions suggestive of skin cancer without increasing the number of unnecessary expert consultations.
- British Journal of General Practice 08/2014; 64(625):380-1. · 2.36 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Background The dermoscope improves general practitioners' (GP) sensitivity for melanoma. However, diagnostic accuracy (DA) and cost-effectiveness of the dermoscope in primary care for the evaluation of all skin lesions suspected of malignancy remains unknown. Objectives To determine the DA and cost-effectiveness of the dermoscope in primary care for skin lesions suspected of malignancy. Methods In a cluster randomized clinical trial, 48 Dutch general practices were randomized to either intervention group using a dermoscope or control group using only naked-eye examination. A total of 194 lesions from 170 patients in the intervention group and 222 lesions from 211 patients in the control group were analysed for DA and cost-effectiveness. ResultsThe percentage of correctly diagnosed lesions in intervention group and control group was 50.5% and 40.5% respectively. This was 61.5% and 22.2% for melanomas. In the intervention group, three malignancies were treated with the expectative treatment option compared to none in the control group. The odds ratio (OR) of a correct diagnosis in the intervention group, compared to control group, was 1.51 (95% CI: 0.96–2.37) P = 0.07. Consequently, the relative risk was 1.25. The incremental cost-effectiveness ratio was €89 (95% CI −€60 to €598), indicating that using a dermoscope costs an additional €89 for one additional correctly diagnosed patient. Additional analyses showed better effects of dermoscopy compared to the control group for 98% of the bootstrap resamples. Conclusions The probability of a correct diagnosis was 1.25 times higher using a dermoscope than without a dermoscope. Although this difference is marginally not statistically significant, dermoscopy in general practice appears to be cost effective. We therefore think that GPs should be trained to use a dermoscope, although they should realize that even with the use of a dermoscope not all lesions will be diagnosed correctly.Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology 11/2013; · 2.69 Impact Factor
Article: Dermoscopy.Canadian Medical Association Journal 06/2014; 186(15). · 5.81 Impact Factor