ORIGINAL ARTICLES: Clinical researchUtilization and rationale for the implementation of total body (digital) photography as an adjunct screening measure for melanomaRice, Zakiya P.a; Weiss, Francesca J.b; DeLong, Laura K.a; Curiel-Lewandrowski, Clarad; Chen, Suephy C.a cAuthor Information aDepartment of Dermatology, Emory University bEmory University School of Medicine cDepartment of HSR&D, Atlanta VA Medical Center, Atlanta, Georgia dArizona Cancer Center, University of Arizona, Arizona, USA Correspondence to Suephy C. Chen, MD, MS, Department of Dermatology, Emory University, 101 Woodruff Circle, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA Tel: +1 404 778 3529; fax: +1 404 778 5395; e-mail: [email protected] Received 16 June 2008 Accepted 16 May 2010 An abstract of this study was presented at the May 2007 Society for Investigative Dermatology. Melanoma Research: October 2010 - Volume 20 - Issue 5 - p 417-421 doi: 10.1097/CMR.0b013e32833d327b Buy Metrics Abstract The primary objective of our study was to update the prevalence of total body photography (TBP) utilization and the rationale for its implementation as an adjunctive screening measure by academic dermatologists across the USA, and investigate the emergence of total body digital photography (TBDP). Our secondary objective was to further examine how TBP/TBDP is being incorporated into the dermatology screening examination in academic pigmented lesion clinics. A questionnaire was mailed to 113 dermatology departments across the USA. About 43% (49/113) of surveyed departments responded. TBP was used by 67% (33/49) of the respondents. Of these respondents, 33% (11/33) used TBDP alone, 33% (11/33) used TBDP in combination with nondigitally based TBP, and 33% (11/33) used nondigital TBP with print photos. The three most frequently cited reasons for the use of full-body baseline photographs were that they reduced patient anxiety, led to fewer biopsies, and helped to find melanoma early in the curable stage. Respondents who did not use full body baseline photographs cited logistical constraints as the number one reason, followed by perceived lack of utility. In conclusion, our study shows that there is a significant number of academic dermatologists using TBP/TBDP. However, this study also shows that there are conflicting beliefs among academic dermatologists concerning the efficacy of TBP/TBDP. At this point with a documented growing trend in utilization of TBP, more studies are needed to evaluate the efficacy of this screening adjunct to diagnose melanoma early and positively impact survival because of early diagnosis. © 2010 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.