A significant part of a dermatologist’s activity involves the diagnosis and management of tumors.The aim of this study was to analyze the caseload at public and private dermatology outpatient clinics in Spain to determine the proportion of tumor diagnoses.
Observational cross-sectional study of diagnoses made in dermatology outpatient clinics during 2 data-collection periods in the DIADERM study, an anonymous survey of a random, representative sample of dermatologists across Spain. Diagnoses made during the 2 periods were coded according to the 10th revision of the International Classification of Diseases. There were 165 tumor-related codes, classified into 24 groups. For the purpose of this study, these groups were then reduced to benign melanocytic lesions, malignant melanocytic lesions, benign nonmelanocytic lesions, and malignant nonmelanocytic lesions.
Tumors accounted for 46.2% of all diagnoses; 18.5% of the tumors were malignant (a category that included in situ forms of keratinocyte cancers). Four of the 10 most common diagnoses were of malignant tumors: in situ keratinocyte cancers, basal cell carcinoma, melanoma, and squamous cell carcinoma. Significant differences were observed between malignant and benign tumors according to type of practice (public vs. private) and geographic region.
Skin cancer accounts for a significant part of the dermatologist’s caseload in Spain. Significant differences were found between public and private care and between geographic regions.