Mobile teledermoscopy is a rapidly advancing technology that promotes early detection and management of skin cancers. Whilst the use of teledermoscopy has proven to be effective and has a role in the detection of skin cancers, patients’ attitudes towards the multiple ways in which this technology can be utilised has not been explored.
Data were obtained from a large randomised controlled trial comparing mobile teledermoscopy-enhanced skin self-examinations (SSEs) with naked-eye SSE. A semi-structured interview guide was developed by the investigators with questions focusing on people’s previous skin screening behaviours and 2 of the major pathways which can be utilised in mobile teledermoscopy: (i) direct-to-consumer and (ii) doctor-to-doctor. All interviews were tape-recorded and transcribed verbatim. Thematic analysis was undertaken by 2 independent researchers.
Twenty-eight participants were interviewed. Eighty-six percent of participants (n = 24/28) had previously had a clinical skin examination. Only 18% of participants (n = 5/28) visited the same doctor for each clinical skin examination. Five main themes were identified in the interviews that affected how people felt about the integration of mobile teledermoscopy into skin screening pathways: history of clinical skin examinations, continuity of the doctor-patient relationship, convenience of the direct-to-consumer teledermoscopy, expedited review enhancing the doctor-to-doctor setting and mobile teledermoscopy as a partner-assisted task.
Overall mobile teledermoscopy was viewed positively for both direct-to-consumer and doctor-to-doctor interaction. Continuity of care in the doctor-patient relationship was not found to be a priority for clinical skin examination with most participants visiting several doctors throughout their clinical skin examination history.

© 2020 S. Karger AG, Basel.