1. J Dermatolog Treat. 2020 May 4:1-9. doi: 10.1080/09546634.2020.1762843. [Epub

ahead of print]

Inpatient Teledermatology During the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Rismiller K(1), Cartron AM(2), Trinidad JCL(1).

Author information: 

(1)Division of Dermatology, Department of Internal Medicine, The Ohio State

University Wexner Medical Center, Columbus, Ohio, USA.

(2)Department of Dermatology, University of Maryland School of Medicine,

Baltimore, MD, USA.

DOI: 10.1080/09546634.2020.1762843 

PMID: 32364809 

2. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2020 May 4. pii: S0190-9622(20)30776-3. doi:

10.1016/j.jaad.2020.04.154. [Epub ahead of print]

The COVID-19 crisis: A unique opportunity to expand dermatology to underserved


Ashrafzadeh S(1), Nambudiri VE(2).

Author information: 

(1)Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Department of Dermatology,

Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

(2)Department of Dermatology, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston,

Massachusetts, USA. Electronic address:

DOI: 10.1016/j.jaad.2020.04.154 

PMCID: PMC7198179

PMID: 32380217 

3. Australas J Dermatol. 2020 May 3. doi: 10.1111/ajd.13301. [Epub ahead of print]

Practice guidelines for teledermatology in Australia.

Abbott LM(1)(2), Miller R(1), Janda M(3), Bennett H(1), Taylor M(4), Arnold C(1),

Shumack S(1), Soyer HP(5), Caffery LJ(5).

Author information: 

(1)The Australasian College of Dermatologists, Sydney, New South Wales,


(2)Sydney Law School, University of Sydney, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.

(3)Centre for Health Services Research, The University of Queensland, St Lucia,

Queensland, Australia.

(4)Centre for Online Health, Centre for Health Services Research, The University 

of Queensland, St Lucia, Queensland, Australia.

(5)The University of Queensland Diamantina Institute, Woolloongabba, Queensland, 


Despite the potential of teledermatology to increase access to dermatology

services and improve patient care, it is not widely practised in Australia. In an

effort to increase uptake of teledermatology by Australian dermatologists and

support best practice, guidelines for teledermatology for the Australian context 

have been developed by The University of Queensland's Centre for Online Health in

collaboration with The Australasian College of Dermatologists' E-Health

Committee. The guidelines are presented in two sections: 1. Guidelines and 2.

Notes to support their application in practice, when feasible and appropriate.

Content was last updated March 2020 and includes modalities of teledermatology;

patient selection and consent; imaging; quality and safety; privacy and security;

communication; and documentation and retention of clinical images. The guidelines

educate dermatologists about the benefits and limitations of telehealth while

articulating how to enhance patient care and reduce risk when practicing


© 2020 The Authors. Australasian Journal of Dermatology published by John Wiley &

Sons Australia, Ltd on behalf of Australasian College of Dermatologists.

DOI: 10.1111/ajd.13301 

PMID: 32363572 

4. Int J Med Inform. 2020 Mar 13;139:104118. doi: 10.1016/j.ijmedinf.2020.104118.

[Epub ahead of print]

Teleoncology for children with cancer: A scoping review on applications and


Kermani F(1), Orooji A(2), Sheikhtaheri A(3).

Author information: 

(1)Department of Health Information Management, School of Health Management and

Information Sciences, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.

(2)School of Medicine, North Khorasan University of Medical Science (NKUMS),

North Khorasan, Iran.

(3)Health Management and Economics Research Center, Department of Health

Information Management, School of Health Management and Information Sciences,

Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran. Electronic address:

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Teleoncology can be used to reduce the limitations due

to the lack of access to specialists, inadequate resources and training, and

reducing unnecessary travels and arising of the costs. The purpose of this study 

was to review the literatures to identify and classify the areas of application

and outcomes of using teleoncology in diagnosis, management, and treatment of

children with cancer.

METHODS: This scoping review of the published literatures was conducted by

searching the Web of Science, PubMed/Medline, Scopus, and Cochrane Library

databases in October 2019. Studies investigated telemedicine in diagnosis,

management, and treatment of cancer in children were also included. We identified

and classified different applications and the reported outcomes of this


RESULTS: In this study, 1834 articles were retrieved, and after removing the

unrelated and duplicated articles, 20 articles were reviewed ultimately. We found

that, teleoncology services were provided to the patients with cancer, their

parents, and nurses in various clinical fields such as telepathology, telemental 

care (telepsychology), teleneurology, teledermatology, telehematology, and

teleophthalmology. The findings also showed that, the outcomes of using

telemedicine in children with cancer can be classified into six general

categories (five primary and 14 secondary outcomes). Primary outcomes including

diagnosis accuracy, reduced costs as well as mortality and secondary outcomes

consist of improved relationship and training, better care management,

satisfaction, and workload.

CONCLUSION: The use of telemedicine for children with cancer is growing, and

there is a tendency for using this technology for families and clinical staff.

Providing teleoncology services to children with cancer may improve diagnosis

accuracy and reduce the cost and mortality rate. Also, better care management,

appropriate relationships and training, increased satisfaction, and decreased

workload may be achieved.

Copyright © 2020 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

DOI: 10.1016/j.ijmedinf.2020.104118 

PMID: 32353751 

5. Telemed J E Health. 2020 Apr 27. doi: 10.1089/tmj.2020.0013. [Epub ahead of


Implementing Teledermatology for Rural Veterans: An Evaluation Using the RE-AIM


Peracca SB(1), Jackson GL(2)(3), Lamkin RP(4), Mohr DC(4)(5), Zhao M(4), Lachica 

O(1), Prentice JC(4)(6), Grenga AM(7), Gifford A(4), Chapman JG(2), Weinstock

MA(7)(8)(9), Oh DH(1)(8)(10).

Author information: 

(1)Dermatology Service, San Francisco Veterans Affairs Health Care System, San

Francisco, California, USA.

(2)Center of Innovation to Accelerate Discovery and Practice Transformation

(ADAPT), Durham Veterans Affairs Health Care System, Durham, North Carolina, USA.

(3)Department of Population Health Sciences and Division of General Internal

Medicine, Department of Medicine, Duke University, North Carolina, USA.

(4)Center for Healthcare Organization and Implementation Research (CHOIR),

Veterans Affairs Boston Health Care System, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

(5)Department of Health Law, Policy and Management, School of Public Health,

Boston University, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

(6)Department of Psychiatry, School of Medicine, Boston University,

Massachusetts, USA.

(7)Providence VA Medical Center, Providence, Rhode Island.

(8)Office of Connected Care, Veterans Health Administration, Washington, District

of Columbia, USA.

(9)Dermatoepidemiology Unit, Departments of Dermatology and Epidemiology, Brown

University, Providence, Rhode Island, USA.

(10)Department of Dermatology, University of California at San Francisco, San

Francisco, California, USA.

Introduction: Few systematic evaluations of implementing teledermatology programs

in large health care systems exist. We conducted a longitudinal evaluation of a

U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) initiative to expand asynchronous

consultative teledermatology services for rural veterans. Methods: The reach,

effectiveness, adoption, implementation, and maintenance framework guided the

evaluation, which included analysis of quantitative VA administrative data as

well as an online survey completed by participating facilities. The first 2 years

of the program were compared with the year before the start of funding. Results: 

Sixteen hub facilities expanded teledermatology's reach over the 2-year period,

increasing the number of referral spoke sites, unique patients served, and

teledermatology encounters. Effectiveness was reflected as teledermatology

constituted an increasing fraction of dermatology activity and served more

remotely located patients. Adoption through defined stages of implementation

progressed as facilities engaged in a variety of strategies to enhance

teledermatology implementation, and facilitators and barriers were identified.

Program maintenance was assessed by Program Sustainability Index scores, which

reflected the importance of executive support, and ongoing concerns about

staffing and longitudinal funding. Discussion: Enabling hubs to create solutions 

that best fit their needs and culture likely increased reach and effectiveness.

Important facilitators included organizational leadership and encouraging

communication between stakeholders before and during the intervention.

Conclusions: A systematic analysis of teledermatology implementation to serve

rural sites in VA documented a high degree of implementation and sustainability

as well as areas for improvement.

DOI: 10.1089/tmj.2020.0013 

PMID: 32343924 

6. PLoS One. 2020 Apr 27;15(4):e0232131. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0232131.

eCollection 2020.

Teledermatology in Norway using a mobile phone app.

Rizvi SMH(1)(2), Schopf T(3), Sangha A(2), Ulvin K(2), Gjersvik P(4).

Author information: 

(1)Department of Dermatology, Oslo University Hospital, Oslo, Norway.

(2)Askin AS, Oslo, Norway.

(3)National Centre for e-Health Research, University Hospital Northern Norway,

Tromsø, Norway.

(4)Institute of Clinical Medicine, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway.

Rashes, ulcers and skin lesions are well suited for telemedicine. We have

developed a smartphone app, the first of its kind in Norway, where a referring

physician can write a short medical history and take clinical and dermatoscopic

photographs with a smartphone, which is then sent to and evaluated by a

dermatologist. In the period from June 1st, 2017, to September 1st, 2019,

clinical information and photographs of rash and skin lesions from 171 patients

were sent by 40 primary care and nursing home physicians via the smartphone app

to four dermatologists for diagnosis and therapeutic advice. A wide range of

dermatological conditions were diagnosed, most commonly chronic ulcers (17%),

eczema (15%) and pigmented lesions (13%). Assessed later by a dermatologist,

referral for regular consultations with a specialist was avoided in 119 patients 

(70%). Sixteen patients (9%) were recommended a regular consultation with a

dermatologist; information for prioritization in the specialist healthcare

service was then provided. In 36 patients (21%), further measures by the

referring physician were recommended. Our experience indicates that many ordinary

consultations on rash, ulcers and skin lesions in the specialist healthcare

services can be avoided when using the smartphone app.

DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0232131 

PMCID: PMC7185702

PMID: 32339203 

Conflict of interest statement: SMHR, AS and KU founded and are shareholders in

Askin AS ( of which TS is a partner. PG has no conflict of interest.

The commercial affiliation does not alter our adherence to PLOS ONE policies on

sharing data and materials.

7. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2020 Apr 22. pii: S0190-9622(20)30696-4. doi:

10.1016/j.jaad.2020.04.080. [Epub ahead of print]

Teledermatology in the Wake of COVID-19: Advantages and Challenges to Continued

Care in a Time of Disarray.

Gupta R(1), Ibraheim MK(2), Doan HQ(3).

Author information: 

(1)School of Medicine, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX, USA. Electronic


(2)The University of Texas McGovern Medical School, Houston, TX, USA.

(3)Department of Dermatology, Division of Internal Medicine, The University of

Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX, USA.

DOI: 10.1016/j.jaad.2020.04.080 

PMCID: PMC7175895

PMID: 32334056 

8. J Med Internet Res. 2020 Apr 21;22(4):e16700. doi: 10.2196/16700.

Benefits of Teledermatology for Geriatric Patients: Population-Based

Cross-Sectional Study.

G Bianchi M(#)(1), Santos A(#)(1), Cordioli E(#)(1).

Author information: 

(1)Telemedicine, Hospital Israelita Albert Einstein, São Paulo, Brazil.

(#)Contributed equally

BACKGROUND: Teledermatology is a health care tool that has been increasingly used

around the world, mostly because dermatology has an emphasis on visual diagnosis.

Many studies have shown that access to specialized care improves using

teledermatology, which provides accurate diagnosis and reduces the time taken for

treatment, with high patient satisfaction. As the population around the world

grows old, there will be even more demand for dermatologists in years to come. It

is essential to know which are the most prevalent skin conditions in the primary 

care population and if they can be addressed through teledermatology.

OBJECTIVE: Our main goal was to evaluate the proportion of lesions in individuals

aged 60 years and older that could be managed using teledermatology in

conjunction with primary care physicians. Second, we aimed to assess the most

frequent skin lesions, the most common treatments provided to patients, and the

distribution and causes of referrals made by the teledermatologists.

METHODS: This was a retrospective cohort study from July 2017 to July 2018 in São

Paulo, Brazil. We included 6633 individuals aged 60 years and older who presented

with 12,770 skin lesions. Teledermatologists had three options to refer patients:

(1) to undergo biopsy directly, (2) to an in-person dermatologist visit, and (3) 

back to the primary care physician with the most probable diagnosis and


RESULTS: Teledermatology managed 66.66% (8408/12614) of dermatoses with the

primary care physician without the need for an in-presence visit; 27.10%

(3419/12614) were referred to dermatologists, and 6.24% (787/12614) directly to

biopsy. The most frequent diseases were seborrheic keratosis, solar lentigo,

onychomycosis, melanocytic nevus, benign neoplasms, actinic keratosis, epidermoid

cyst, xerosis, leucoderma, and wart, with significant differences between sexes. 

Malignant tumors increased with age and were the leading cause for biopsies,

while infectious skin conditions and pigmentary disorders decreased. Emollient

was the most frequent treatment prescribed, in 31.88% (909/2856) of the cases.

CONCLUSIONS: Teledermatology helped to treat 67% of the dermatoses of older

individuals, addressing cases of minor complexity quickly and conveniently

together with the primary care physician, thus optimizing dermatological

appointments for the most severe, surgical, or complex diseases. Teledermatology 

does not aim to replace a face-to-face visit with the dermatologist; however, it 

might help to democratize dermatological treatment access for patients and

decrease health care expenses.

©Mara G Bianchi, Andre Santos, Eduardo Cordioli. Originally published in the

Journal of Medical Internet Research (, 21.04.2020.

DOI: 10.2196/16700 

PMCID: PMC7201316

PMID: 32314966 

9. Mil Med. 2020 Apr 20. pii: usz479. doi: 10.1093/milmed/usz479. [Epub ahead of


Synchronous Teledermoscopy in Military Treatment Facilities.

Day WG(1), Shrivastava V(2), Roman JW(2).

Author information: 

(1)Internal Medicine Intern, Naval Medical Center Portsmouth, 620 John Paul Jones

Cir, Portsmouth, VA 23708.

(2)Department of Dermatology, Naval Medical Center Portsmouth, 620 John Paul

Jones Cir, Portsmouth, VA 23708.

Sustained demand for dermatologic care throughout military medicine, in

conjunction with increasing dermatologic provider shortages, has led to increase 

use of teledermatology in military treatment facilities (MTFs). Initially used to

aid in the differentiation of suspicious melanocytic lesions, dermoscopy has

found increasing clinical utility in an expanding realm of general dermatologic

conditions. We demonstrate the use of synchronous teledermoscopy within a remote 

MTF by repurposing webcam technology already available at most MTFs. Two patients

were seen in clinic at a remote naval primary care clinic with limited

subspecialties. Once written consent was retrieved, an on-site dermatologist

evaluated each patient and performed a history and skin exam with dermoscopy.

Synchronous consultations were conducted with the Global Med Cart (GlobalMed(R)

Clinical Access Station with TotalExam(R) 3 HDUSB camera), and Cisco webcam video

jabber (Cisco TelePresence PrecisionHD USB Camera part number TTC8-03). The

patients then underwent individual synchronous teledermatology consultations with

an off-site U.S. Navy dermatologist located in the continental United States. The

methodology for the consultation involved the use of a standard dermatoscope and 

jabber webcam. Two synchronous teledermatology consultations were completed

successfully on patients in MTFs with limited subspecialty capabilities. Both

cases, with two lesions of concern per case, had 100% concordance between the

on-site and teleconsulted dermatologist. Through observing inter-rater agreements

between the on-site and remote dermatologists, this small study demonstrates a

novel application of technology readily available at most MTFs.

© The Author(s) 2020. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the

Association of Military Surgeons of the United States. All rights reserved. For

permissions, please e-mail:

DOI: 10.1093/milmed/usz479 

PMID: 32307547 

10. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2020 Apr 16. pii: S0190-9622(20)30661-7. doi:

10.1016/j.jaad.2020.04.048. [Epub ahead of print]

Teledermatology in the Era of COVID-19: Experience of an Academic Department of


Perkins S(1), Cohen JM(2), Nelson CA(2), Bunick CG(2).

Author information: 

(1)Department of Dermatology, Yale University, New Haven, CT, 06520. Electronic


(2)Department of Dermatology, Yale University, New Haven, CT, 06520.

DOI: 10.1016/j.jaad.2020.04.048 

PMCID: PMC7162755

PMID: 32305442 

11. Clin Exp Dermatol. 2020 Apr 18. doi: 10.1111/ced.14245. [Epub ahead of print]

Telemedicine and support groups in order to improve the adherence to treatment

and health related quality of life in patients affected by inflammatory skin

conditions during COVID-19 emergency.

Marasca C(1), Ruggiero A(1), Fontanella G(1), Ferrillo M(1), Fabbrocini G(1),

Villani A(1).

Author information: 

(1)Section of Dermatology, Department of Clinical Medicine and Surgery,

University of Naples Federico II, Napoli, Italy.

We have read with great interest the article by Deepak et al. which reported the 

measures applied during the COVID-19 emergency in order to answer to the request 

of consultations. Particularly they described the growing importance that

telemedicine is having during this emergency, focusing on the use of mobile

technology (particularly the use of WhatsApp) as a method to communicate via text

messages, voice messages, photos and videos, which is rapidly expanding within

the field of telemedicine.

This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

DOI: 10.1111/ced.14245 

PMID: 32304587 

12. Clin Exp Dermatol. 2020 Apr 17. doi: 10.1111/ced.14244. [Epub ahead of print]

Secure communication conduits during COVID19 lockdown.

Black SM(1), Ali FR(2).

Author information: 

(1)Medical Sciences Division, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK.

(2)Vernova Healthcare Community Interest Company, Macclesfield, UK.

We commend Deepak and colleagues in highlighting the virtues of instant messaging

tools such as WhatsApp during the COVID-19 crisis1 . Whilst WhatsApp's advantages

include being highly intuitive, widely used and accessible, there are concerns

among clinicians about its use, as well as that of other commercially available

communications apps. These include the loss of anonymity to patients, the need to

reveal their personal telephone number as well questions over privacy and data


This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

DOI: 10.1111/ced.14244 

PMID: 32302418 

13. Dermatol Online J. 2019 Nov 15;25(11). pii: 13030/qt6xh9p2nn.

Implementation of a patient-assisted teledermatology model in the Veteran Health 


Fortugno AP, Dellavalle RP(1).

Author information: 

(1)Department of Dermatology, University of Colorado School of Medicine, Aurora, 

CO Dermatology Service, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Eastern Colorado

Health Care System, Aurora, CO Department of Epidemiology, Colorado School of

Public Health, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, Aurora, CO.

Owing to the inherently visual nature of the field of dermatology, advances in

imaging and communication technology have resulted in wide-spread application of 

teledermatology since its introduction in the mid-1990s. In the last 20 years,

studies have repetitively shown that teledermatology provides effective and

efficient quality care for patients. It also increases access to underserved

patients and reduces traveling costs, wait times, and unnecessary referrals. In

this letter the authors seek to analyze implementation of a direct patient to

dermatologist model in a Veteran Health Administration (VHA) patient population, 

referred to as patient-assisted teledermatology. This population is largely over 

the age of 65 and a significant portion are either without internet or have the

minimum technology necessary to participate in the studied model. Owing to these 

observations and personal experiences, the authors found the implementation

process of a patient-assisted model to be challenging in this population.

PMID: 32045144  [Indexed for MEDLINE]

14. JAAD Case Rep. 2020 Jan 30;6(2):141-143. doi: 10.1016/j.jdcr.2019.11.006.

eCollection 2020 Feb.

A suspected hedgehog dermatosis diagnosed via store and forward teledermatology.

Said JT(1), Stavert R(2).

Author information: 

(1)Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts.

(2)Department of Dermatology, Cambridge Health Alliance, Harvard Medical School, 

Boston, Massachusetts.

DOI: 10.1016/j.jdcr.2019.11.006 

PMCID: PMC7000437

PMID: 32042872 

15. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2020 Feb 5. pii: S0190-9622(20)30151-1. doi:

10.1016/j.jaad.2020.01.065. [Epub ahead of print]

Clinical effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of teledermatology: Where are we

now, and what are the barriers to adoption?

Wang RH(1), Barbieri JS(2), Nguyen HP(3), Stavert R(4), Forman HP(5), Bolognia

JL(6), Kovarik CL(7); Group for Research of Policy Dynamics in Dermatology.

Author information: 

(1)University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, Philadelphia,


(2)Department of Dermatology, University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of

Medicine, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Electronic address:

(3)Department of Dermatology, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta,


(4)Department of Dermatology, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston,


(5)Department of Public Health (Health Policy), Economics, and Management, Yale

University, New Haven, Connecticut.

(6)Department of Dermatology, Yale School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut.

(7)Department of Dermatology, University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of

Medicine, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

There has been rapid growth in teledermatology over the past decade, and

teledermatology services are increasingly being used to support patient care

across a variety of care settings. Teledermatology has the potential to increase 

access to high-quality dermatologic care while maintaining clinical efficacy and 

cost-effectiveness. Recent expansions in telemedicine reimbursement from the

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) ensure that teledermatology will

play an increasingly prominent role in patient care. Therefore, it is important

that dermatologists be well informed of both the promises of teledermatology and 

the potential practice challenges a continuously evolving mode of care delivery

brings. In this article, we will review the evidence on the clinical and

cost-effectiveness of teledermatology and we will discuss system-level and

practice-level barriers to successful teledermatology implementation as well as

potential implications for dermatologists.

Copyright © 2020 American Academy of Dermatology, Inc. Published by Elsevier Inc.

All rights reserved.

DOI: 10.1016/j.jaad.2020.01.065 

PMID: 32035106 

16. Clin Exp Dermatol. 2020 Feb 7. doi: 10.1111/ced.14191. [Epub ahead of print]

Patient satisfaction with a new skin cancer teledermatology service.

Nicholson P(1), Macedo C(1), Fuller C(1), Thomas L(1).

Author information: 

(1)Dermatology Department, Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust,

London, UK.

BACKGROUND: Rising numbers of two-week-wait (2WW) skin cancer referrals have

caused increasing pressure on UK dermatology departments. Initiatives to address 

this include teledermatology. Previous studies have indicated good patient

acceptability but most have focused on general dermatology rather than skin

cancer referrals, and have taken place in rural settings, where teledermatology

may be preferable.

AIM: To evaluate patient satisfaction of teledermatology 2WW services in a

London-based tertiary National Health Service (NHS) setting.

METHODS: A literature search was performed and a patient satisfaction survey was 

designed to evaluate: (i) ease of completing a questionnaire about the skin

lesion; (ii) lifestyle impact; (iii) preferences regarding electronic data

collection and communication of results; and (iv) confidence in the service. A

five-point Likert scale was used to assess responses. The study took place over a

20-week period.

RESULTS: Over half (51%; n = 31 of 60 patients) were female; 78% (47) were aged

≤ 55 years and 65% (39) were Caucasian. Over 80% (49) would recommend the

service, and the majority felt confident with the teledermatology model. Overall,

patients would be happy to complete electronic questionnaires and receive results

electronically, with younger patients being more amenable to this. Patients with 

better health status, those of younger age and those with less frequent visits to

a dermatologist were more accepting of teledermatology.

CONCLUSION: To our knowledge, this is the first comprehensive study evaluating

patient satisfaction with teledermatology specifically for 2WW referrals in an

NHS setting. As skin cancer referrals increase, dermatology departments must

adjust. Patient involvement and feedback is paramount in implementing and

expanding teledermatology services.

© 2020 British Association of Dermatologists.

DOI: 10.1111/ced.14191 

PMID: 32031275 

17. J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol. 2020 Feb 7. doi: 10.1111/jdv.16275. [Epub ahead of 


Diagnostic accuracy and interobserver concordance: teledermoscopy of 600

suspicious skin lesions in Southern Denmark.

Vestergaard T(1)(2), Prasad SC(1), Schuster A(1), Laurinaviciene R(1), Andersen

MK(3), Bygum A(1).

Author information: 

(1)Department of Dermatology and Allergy Centre, Odense University Hospital,

Odense, Denmark.

(2)OPEN, Odense Patient data Explorative Network, Odense University Hospital,

Odense, Denmark.

(3)Audit Project Odense, Research Unit of General Practice, University of

Southern Denmark, Odense, Denmark.

BACKGROUND: Skin cancer incidences are increasing and early diagnosis, especially

of malignant melanoma, is crucial. Teledermatology including teledermoscopy (TDS)

can be used to triage referrals of suspicious skin lesions, however, this is not 

currently recommended in Denmark.

OBJECTIVES: To evaluate diagnostic accuracy, sensitivity, specificity and

interobserver concordance of TDS, and to evaluate the number of incidental

lesions potentially missed by TDS.

METHODS: Fifty general practices were invited to send images of suspicious skin

lesions for evaluation using smartphone TDS. Simultaneously, the patient was

referred for a face-to-face (FTF) consultation. Images for TDS were independently

evaluated by two dermatologists; a third dermatologist performed the FTF

consultation. Diagnosis, management plan and level of diagnostic confidence were 

noted. For TDS photo quality was rated, and for FTF any incidental findings were 


RESULTS: Six hundred lesions in 519 patients were included. The diagnostic

accuracy was significantly higher on FTF evaluation than on TDS (P < 0.01).

However, this was associated with a significant difference in specificity

(P ≤ 0.012) whereas no significant difference was found in sensitivity. The

concordance between FTF and TDS, and the interobserver concordance of two TDS

evaluations was moderate to substantial (AC1 = 0.57-0.71). Incidental melanomas

were found in 0.6% of patients on FTF evaluation, adding an extra 13% of

melanomas. However, on TDS these patients' photographed lesions all warranted FTF

follow-up, where these melanomas would have been identified.

CONCLUSION: In this large prospective study, no significant difference in

sensitivity was observed between FTF and TDS, but specificity was lower on TDS

than FTF. Taking management plans into account, we would, however, potentially

have dismissed 2 of 23 melanomas, if only TDS had been used for assessment. One

of these was a melanoma located on the scalp, an anatomic region less suitable

for TDS.

© 2020 European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology.

DOI: 10.1111/jdv.16275 

PMID: 32031277