Case discussion: How would you treat this patient? [29 January]

This week we have another interesting case discussion from Dr Slavko Doslo. An 88-year-old patient with past history of melanoma presented for skin check that revealed a suspicious lesion.

Describe what you see from the clinical and dermoscopy images. How would you biopsy this lesion? Continue reading “Case discussion: How would you treat this patient? [29 January]”

Case discussion: How would you treat this patient? [15 January]

This week we have another learning opportunity with a simple, real life and everyday scenario from Dr Slavko Doslo. An 83-year-old patient presented for skin check and noted a suspicious lesion on the shoulder.

From the clinical and dermoscopy images, describe what you notice. How you would biopsy this lesion? Continue reading “Case discussion: How would you treat this patient? [15 January]”

How to Plan for Surgery to Avoid Poor Performance [Part 2]

Don’t miss the second part in the lecture series “Prior Planning and Proper Preparation Prevent Piss-Poor Performance” with experienced skin cancer doctor Jonny Levy. Dr Levy discusses the surgical excision of a lesion on his patient’s chin and shares a few tricks of the trade on how to plan for surgery and how to reduce the risk of poor scarring when operating on this sensitive area, often swollen from anaesthetics. Continue reading “How to Plan for Surgery to Avoid Poor Performance [Part 2]”

Case discussion: How would you treat this patient? [28 November]

congenital melanocytic naevi

This week we have an interesting case from Dr Tamana Zemaryalai. An 18-month-old girl presents with a changing birth mark on her left thigh. The mother noticed an area of depigmentation and approached the doctor for a review.

What is your assessment? How would you handle this? Continue reading “Case discussion: How would you treat this patient? [28 November]”

Simple Explanation on the Recent Medicare Changes

If you struggle to understand the latest changes in Medicare billing for skin services, please view the short video below with Dr Tony Dicker. The experienced skin cancer doctor provides a simple explanation on the key Medicare changes you need to be aware of and what they mean for your skin cancer practice.

Continue reading “Simple Explanation on the Recent Medicare Changes”

Case discussion: How would you treat this patient? [7 November]

Thank you to Dr Ravanjit Singh for contributing this fascinating case. 65 year old male, lesion on neck with history of growth recently. Please review the clinical and dermoscopic pictures.

What are the differential diagnoses here? What would you do next?

Continue reading “Case discussion: How would you treat this patient? [7 November]”

Case discussion: How would you treat this patient? [31 October]

Great learning opportunity with a simple, real life and everyday scenario from Dr David Smith. A 69 year old gentleman attended for a skin check with a small pigmented lesion on the left lower leg that he was not aware of.

How would you evaluate these dermoscopy images? Continue reading “Case discussion: How would you treat this patient? [31 October]”

Case discussion: How would you treat this patient? [24 October]

Another great case from Dr David Smith. An 80-year-old gentleman gave a history of a “mole” being present as long as he could remember but becoming more raised and irregular as an adolescent. The recent change was noticed by the patient’s wife and hairdresser.

What do you make of the history and the clinical image?
Continue reading “Case discussion: How would you treat this patient? [24 October]”

Case discussion: How would you treat this patient? [10 October]

While performing a skin check on an elderly person, Dr Slavko Doslo noticed a large, flat, pigmented lesion.

Would you have done anything with this?

What do you think of the dermoscopy images?

Continue reading “Case discussion: How would you treat this patient? [10 October]”

Dermatoscopy in General Practice

dermatologists

A review by Professor David Wilkinson of two articles that focus on dermatoscopy in general practice.

A note from Professor David Wilkinson:

“The purpose of my monthly research blog posts is to share interesting, recent material from the world’s leading journals. And, importantly, to provide useful updates on aspects of clinical practice. This month, I share two recent pieces for your review and consideration.

The first is a short commentary from Associate Professor Cliff Rosendahl, who is known to many of us and is a skin cancer GP in Queensland. I had the pleasure of supporting Cliff through his PhD when I was Dean of Medicine at UQ. In this piece, Cliff provides commentary on a paper that looked at use of, and interest in, dermatoscopy among GPs in France. The commentary from Cliff is below – he argues for improved teaching of dermatoscopy among medical students in Australian medical schools. What do you think?

The second short paper is fascinating, and speaks to a question I am asked a lot. Do patients care about the gender of the doctor doing their skin check? Remarkably there is very little research on this topic. Again, this short research report is below for your interest. This is a short report and is well worth a read! Fascinating findings – will any of this change your practice?”


Research article 1: Dermatoscopy in General Practice

‘Melanoma writes its message on the skin with its own ink and it is there for all to see. Unfortunately some see but do not comprehend.’ Since Neville Davis made this statement in the Annals of Plastic Surgery in 1978, the advent of dermatoscopy has facilitated earlier diagnosis of melanoma, as well as enhancing diagnostic accuracy for many dermatological conditions, both benign and malignant. Such is the level of evidence for the diagnosis of melanoma that dermatoscopy is now the standard of care in Australasia for clinicians treating pigmented skin lesions. With skin conditions accounting for up to 14.8% of all consultations in general practice it has been suggested that dermatoscopy is now as applicable in that discipline as is use of the stethoscope.

In their study in this edition of the BJD, Chappuis et al. deliver detailed findings of the first assessment of dermatoscopy use by French general practitioners (GPs), reporting that 8% of respondents possessed a dermatoscope and 16.9% had received training in dermatoscopy.

This low level of usage of dermatoscopy is not unique to GPs or to France. Studies on dermatoscopy use, cited in the study by Chappuis et al., suggest that while use appears to be high by dermatologists in Europe and Australia (94.6% in France and 98% in Australia), less than half of the dermatologists surveyed in a cross-sectional survey in the U.S.A. in 2010 had used a dermatoscope, although a more recent survey suggests use may have increased to around 79%. The only other study that attempted to quantify dermatoscopy use by GPs reported that one-third of respondents, in Australia in 2007, used dermatoscopy.

In the twenty-first century, debate about the merits of dermatoscopy is as inappropriate as debate about the merits of using an otoscope. Cited drawbacks such as cost and time constraints are no longer tenable and any perceived lack of efficacy of dermatoscopy is likely to be related to lack of training and experience rather than to science.

It is time for a paradigm shift in attitude and practice and such changes start not at workshops for graduate doctors, no matter how appropriate these are, but in medical school. The kit of stethoscope, patella hammer, ophthalmoscope and otoscope, which adorned the twentieth-century medical student’s white coat, should have the dermatoscope added to it. Instruction in the use of this relatively low-cost hand-held device should be an integral part of teaching in medical school as well as in advanced training programmes for GPs.

The study by Chappuis et al. found that GPs in France were receptive to training in dermatoscopy. The time is ripe to respond to this, not only for GPs in France, but for medical students globally. This will bring us one step closer to the dream of the late Bernie Ackerman: that no person should die of melanoma.

Click here to download the full paper  


Research article 2: Patient Preferences During Skin Cancer Screening Examination

The results are very interesting and you might also want to read to understand the patients psychology of choosing the gender of the doctor for their skin check. 

patient-preference-1  patient-preference-2

Click here to download the full paper 


Learn more about skin cancer medicine in primary care at the next Skin Cancer Certificate Courses:

Skin Cancer Certificate Courses in Australia