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19.03.2020

Diagnosis of Cutaneous Melanoma: the Gap Between the Knowledge of General Practitioners and Dermatologists in a Brazilian Population

Zeitschrift:
Journal of Cancer Education
Autoren:
Andrea Quadros Garrido, Alberto Julius Alves Wainstein, Marina Patrus Ananias Brandão, Fernando Augusto de Vasconcellos Santos, Flavia Vasques Bittencourt, Carolina Leshman, Ana Paula Drummond-Lage
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Abstract

The early diagnosis of cutaneous melanoma provides less aggressive treatment reducing mortality. General practitioners are responsible for cancer diagnoses in the Brazilian Public Health System and therefore play a crucial role in the prevention and early detection of melanoma. To assess the melanoma knowledge of a primary healthcare physician, the general practitioner, compared to a dermatologist. General practitioners and dermatologists answered a questionnaire about melanoma and the management of suspected cases. The results of both groups were compared. The sample consisted of 80 specialists and 160 general practitioners. When asked about the “ABCDE” rule, 96.2% of the dermatologists knew about it, compared to 34.4% of the general practitioners. The percentage of dermatologists who examined the whole skin of the patient at high risk for melanoma was 90% vs. 24.5% amongst general practitioners. The most cited reasons for the absence of the examination of patients at risk for melanoma were lack of time at the consultations (17.6% specialists, 66.1% generalists) and an excessive number of patients (17.6% specialists, 61.5% generalists). General practitioner has less knowledge about melanoma compared to the dermatologists and presents deficient behaviors about patients at risk or who have suspicious lesions, indicating the need for training and continuing education.

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