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Giornale Italiano di Dermatologia e Venereologia 2019 October;154(5):523-8

DOI: 10.23736/S0392-0488.17.05565-1


language: English

Five-point checklist for skin cancer detection in primary care

Elvira MOSCARELLA 1 , Aimilios LALLAS 2, Caterina LONGO 1, Roberto ALFANO 3, Giuseppe ARGENZIANO 4

1 Unit of Dermatology and Skin Cancer, Arcispedale Santa Maria Nuova IRCCS, Reggio Emilia, Italy; 2 First Department of Dermatology, Aristotle University, Thessaloniki, Greece; 3 Department of Anesthesiology, Surgery and Emergency, Luigi Vanvitelli University of Campania, Naples, Italy; 4 Unit of Dermatology, Luigi Vanvitelli University of Campania, Naples, Italy

BACKGROUND: Skin cancer screening interventions often relay on the involvement of general practitioners (GPs). Many interventions up to now have been directed to training approaches focusing on the clinical features of skin malignancies to increase GPs skill in skin cancer recognition.
METHODS: Based on the available current knowledge about skin cancer epidemiology and risk factors, we built up a 5-point checklist to help GPs in triaging patients to be referred to a dermatologist.
RESULTS: Five-point check-list: 1) visible sun damaged skin on exposed areas (red and brown to black macules and crusts on visible skin); 2) more than 20 nevi on the arms; 3) one or more ABCD positive lesions (flat, large and asymmetric macules); 4) one or more EFG positive lesions (elevated, firm and growing skin lesions); 5) a pigmented lesion larger than 1.5 cm in diameter.
CONCLUSIONS: Our aim was to provide a short list of practical rules, easy to adopt into a routine practice, in order to achieve a more effective triage of patients requiring a dermatology consultation for skin cancer examination. The novelty of the proposed method relies on the approach. The proposed method does not require the GP to diagnose skin cancer. The aim is to involve GPs in the selection of patients to be referred to the specialist, in order to reduce the waiting time while avoiding the risk to leave cancers untreated.

KEY WORDS: Skin neoplasms; Melanoma; General practitioners

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