Images increase accuracy of skin cancer self-detection

Images increase accuracy of skin cancer self-detection
Visual images such as those of benign and cancerous skin lesions increase awareness and accuracy of skin self-examination, according to a review published in the July issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.

(HealthDay)—Visual images such as those of benign and cancerous skin lesions increase awareness and accuracy of skin self-examination, according to a review published in the July issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.

Jennifer E. McWhirter and Laurie Hoffman-Goetz, Ph.D., M.P.H., from the University of Waterloo in Canada, identified and reviewed outcomes from 25 published studies that used visual images to promote skin self-examination for early detection of skin cancer.

The researchers found that visual images increased knowledge and self-efficacy related to skin self-examination and increased the frequency and accuracy of skin self-examination and melanoma detection. The most effective images were mole-mapping diagrams, baseline photographs of patients' own moles and skin surfaces, benign and , dermoscopy, and lesions changing over time. Text descriptors alone were found to be ineffective.

"Evidence from this systematic review suggests an important role for visual images in patient education related to informed self-monitoring for ," McWhirter and Hoffman-Goetz conclude. "Patients should have access to images for viewing at any point in time, and to large quantities of exemplars, to augment and pattern-based recognition, respectively."

More information: Abstract
Full Text (subscription or payment may be required)

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Melanomas may appear noticeably different than other moles

Jan 21, 2008

A preliminary study suggests that melanomas have a different appearance than other irregular skin moles (i.e., are “ugly ducklings”), according to a report in the January issue of Archives of Dermatology, one of the JAMA/Archives ...

Recommended for you

Video: Is that double mastectomy really necessary?

Oct 24, 2014

When Angeline Vuong, 27,was diagnosed with cancer in one breast earlier this year, her first reaction was "A DOUBLE MASTECTOMY. NOW. " Turns out, she's far from alone: a recent JAMA study of 190,000 breast cancer cases in ...

User comments