Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Clinicians cite time, patient embarrassment as barriers to performing skin cancer exams

Date:
January 17, 2011
Source:
JAMA and Archives Journals
Summary:
Time constraints, other illnesses and patient embarrassment may prevent dermatologists, internists and family practitioners from conducting full-body skin examinations, according to a new study. However, dermatologists are significantly more likely than internists and family practitioners to conduct such screenings.

Time constraints, other illnesses and patient embarrassment may prevent dermatologists, internists and family practitioners from conducting full-body skin examinations, according to a report in the January issue of Archives of Dermatology, one of the JAMA/Archives journals. However, dermatologists are significantly more likely than internists and family practitioners to conduct such screenings.

Skin cancer is the most frequently diagnosed cancer in the United States, according to background information in the article. "It is critical for patients to adhere to primary prevention behaviors and for clinicians to adopt secondary prevention strategies aimed at early detection of skin cancer to reduce its associated morbidity and mortality," the authors write. "Previous studies have suggested that many individuals, particularly those with established risk factors for melanoma, would benefit from active skin cancer screening and surveillance, and screening by dermatologists in particular may also be cost-effective."

Susan A. Oliveria, Sc.D., M.P.H., of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, and colleagues surveyed 2,999 physicians randomly selected from the American Medical Association's Medical Marketing Services database in 2005. Of those, 1,669 (59.2 percent) returned surveys, including 559 family practitioners, 431 internists and 679 dermatologists.

More dermatologists (81.3 percent) than family practitioners (59.6 percent) or internists (56.4 percent) report regularly performing full-body skin examinations on their patients.

Among all the responding physicians, the top three barriers to performing these examinations were time constraints, competing illnesses and patient embarrassment or reluctance. More family practitioners (54.4 percent) and internists (54.5 percent) reported time constraints as a moderate or major barrier than did dermatologists (30.6 percent),

Dermatologists were more likely to cite patient embarrassment or reluctance as a moderate or major barrier (44.2 percent, vs. 31.3 percent of family practitioners and 32.7 percent of internists). This may be because patients visit the dermatologist with more stigmatizing skin conditions, because they don't have an established relationship with a specialist or because they do not expect to undress, the authors note. "Patients may see a dermatologist for an isolated skin condition, such as a wart, and the dermatologist may feel awkward asking this person to undress for a full-body skin examination," they write. Conversely, internists and primary care providers routinely ask patients to undress for physical examinations (such as pelvic and rectal examinations); thus, undressing for the examination is understood and expected by the patient."

Recognizing such barriers could help to overcome them in both primary and secondary care settings, the authors conclude. "Skin cancer is an ideal cancer for encouraging screening because many risk factors are well known, including family history, the presence of atypical nevi, skin type and history and pattern of sun exposure; because the disease is highly prevalent; and because there are opportunities for early detection," they write. "Understanding the determinants of patient skin cancer screening could help promote interventions based on physician characteristics that are amenable to change, potentially improve physicians' prevention practices and help promote early detection."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by JAMA and Archives Journals. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Susan A. Oliveria; Maureen K. Heneghan; Linda F. Cushman; Eloise A. Ughetta; Allan C. Halpern. Skin Cancer Screening by Dermatologists, Family Practitioners, and Internists: Barriers and Facilitating Factors. Archives of Dermatology, 2011; 147 (1): 39-44 DOI: 10.1001/archdermatol.2010.414

Cite This Page:

JAMA and Archives Journals. "Clinicians cite time, patient embarrassment as barriers to performing skin cancer exams." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 January 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/01/110117161448.htm>.
JAMA and Archives Journals. (2011, January 17). Clinicians cite time, patient embarrassment as barriers to performing skin cancer exams. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 2, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/01/110117161448.htm
JAMA and Archives Journals. "Clinicians cite time, patient embarrassment as barriers to performing skin cancer exams." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/01/110117161448.htm (accessed October 2, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola Might Not Be Out Of Control In U.S., But Coverage Is

Ebola Might Not Be Out Of Control In U.S., But Coverage Is

Newsy (Oct. 2, 2014) Coverage of the lone Ebola patient discovered in Texas has U.S. media in a frenzy — but does the coverage match the reality? Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
US Hunts Contacts of Ebola Patient, Including Children

US Hunts Contacts of Ebola Patient, Including Children

AFP (Oct. 2, 2014) Health officials in Texas on Wednesday scoured the Dallas area for people, including schoolchildren, who came in contact with a Liberian man who was diagnosed with Ebola in the United States. Duration: 00:55 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Study Says Losing Sense Of Smell Can Indicate Death

Study Says Losing Sense Of Smell Can Indicate Death

Newsy (Oct. 2, 2014) Researchers found elderly adults with a poor sense of smell are more likely to die within five years. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Pregnancy Spacing Could Have Big Impact On Autism Risks

Pregnancy Spacing Could Have Big Impact On Autism Risks

Newsy (Oct. 1, 2014) A new study says children born less than one year and more than five years after a sibling can have an increased risk for autism. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins