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Data suggests skin cancer patients would like more involvement in the Tx decision-making process

Video courtesy of the University of Alabama at Birmingham

Skin cancer patients would prefer to see improvement in physician-patient communication and to become more involved in the treatment decision-making process, according to information released by the American Society for Dermatologic (ASDSA) and a Patient-Centered/Directed Outcomes for Skin Cancer Roundtable the society conducted.

The findings of the roundtable discussion were published recently in the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) (2017; 35 suppl abstr:e21079).

Twenty-one people were included in the roundtable aimed at soliciting comments and feedback to assess patient satisfaction and needs. Of the participants, 10 were melanoma patients and 11 were non-melanoma patients.

Pts are seeking more involvement in the Tx decision-making process

The information collected indicated that the participants wanted to be involved in the decision-making process and had high expectations for physician-patient communication. The group also included patient education as an expectation during skin cancer treatment.

Additional findings showed that most patients undergoing skin cancer treatment were concerned about their ability to return to normal function, scarring from treatment, and concern of subsequent tumours or recurrence of the primary tumour.

“ASDSA is thrilled ASCO recognized the importance of including the patient perspective in skin cancer treatment,” said Dr. Thomas Rohrer, president of the ASDSA. “This data gives qualitative information on the specific concerns of skin cancer patients, which has contributed positively to the patient and medical research literature and merited the need for further study.”

Dr. Rohrer is a dermatologic surgeon at Skin Care Physicians in Chestnut Hill, Mass.

To further the research, ASDSA is hoping to study non-melanoma skin cancer in patients over the age of 65 years and patients who have been diagnosed with genetic skin cancer syndromes.

Video: Dermatologist examines patient for skin cancer

In the video posted above, Dr. Blake Phillips demonstrates his approach to educating patients about skin cancer screening.

Dr. Phillips is a dermatologist and fellow at the University of Alabama at Birmingham Department of Dermatology in Birmingham, Ala.

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