Mobile secondary prevention of skin cancer

QUT Improving Health Outcomes for People researchers attended the 2nd Global Advances and Controversies in Skin Cancer Conference 2015. The conference was attended by medical, research and health support professionals debating prevention, diagnosis, treatment and survivorship of skin cancer (including both melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancer).

The conference highlighted the global burden of skin cancer. The incidence of skin cancer, both melanoma and non-melanoma, is increasing worldwide. There are approximately 3 million non-melanoma skin cancers and 132,000 melanoma skin cancers diagnosed annually.

Prof Monika Janda and Caitlin Horsham presented findings from QUT Improving Health Outcomes for People research on mobile teledermoscopy for the early detection of melanoma. Prof Janda’s oral presentation ‘Mobile secondary prevention: Will this be a game changer?” discussed the innovative technology when placed in the hands of the consumer. This technology allows individuals to take photos of suspicious skin spots using a dermatoscope (special camera attached to a smartphone) and send them to a remote dermatologist for telediagnosis.

Caitlin presented her poster on “Consumer acceptance of patient-performed mobile teledermoscopy for melanoma screening.” This research found consumers aged 50-64 years at high risk of skin cancer (fair skin, or previous skin cancer) were highly accepting with 85% of consumers agreeing it would improve diagnosis of skin cancer. Selected participants were asked to trial the dermatoscope and send images of their skin lesion to the study dermatologist. Participants found the dermatoscope easy to use, however 12% of participants felt anxious waiting for their results.