Introduction: Non-melanoma skin cancer (NMSC) is a serious cause of morbidity and mortality in organ transplant recipients. The necessary immunosuppressive therapy is linked to an increased number of biologically more aggressive acting skin tumours. Preventing disease and providing early diagnosis and treatment is thus essential. This is done through repetitive patient education and regular examination of the skin performed by a trained specialist, i.e., a dermatologist. We investigated the routine level of monitoring for NMSC in organ transplant recipients in Denmark. Materials and methods: A questionnaire survey was conducted on how hospital departments educate patients in NMSC prevention, the frequency of full-body skin examination and where patients are treated when a tumour is found. The questionnaire was sent to 28 medical departments in Denmark that follow up organ transplant recipients. Twenty-five departments returned the questionnaire. Results: A full-body skin examination was routinely done in six (24%) of the departments. Fifteen (60%) of the departments informed patients about the risk factors for developing skin cancer, but only five (20%) provided written information. Discussion: There appears to be considerable scope for improvement in the follow-up of organ transplant recipients. Providing thorough and repeated information to organ transplant patients, in addition to early diagnosis and treatment carried out by trained specialists according to standard guidelines, can minimize the morbidity and mortality caused by non-melanoma skin cancer in these patients. We suggest that written guidelines be provided in order to improve these patients' treatment and prognosis. A corresponding survey done in the United Kingdom produced almost the same conclusions.
|Bidragets oversatte titel||Screening for skin cancer in organ transplant recipients in Denmark|
|Tidsskrift||Ugeskrift for laeger|
|Status||Udgivet - 20 jun. 2005|