The Integrated Skin Exam film: an educational intervention to promote early detection of melanoma by medical students

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Medicine, Division of Dermatology; School of Medicine

Publication Date


Document Type



Attitude of Health Personnel; Dermatology; Early Detection of Cancer; *Education, Medical; Female; Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice; Humans; Male; Melanoma; *Motion Pictures as Topic; Self Efficacy; Skin Neoplasms; Students, Medical


Dermatology | Medical Education | Neoplasms | Skin and Connective Tissue Diseases


BACKGROUND: Knowledge of the skin cancer examination (SCE) and its practice remain relevant competency gaps among medical students.

OBJECTIVE: We elaborate on a method of SCE known as the Integrated Skin Exam and discuss the development of an instructional film that illustrates its principles. We assess the tool's effect on knowledge, attitudes, and perceptions related to the SCE.

METHODS: Second-year students among 8 randomized schools viewed the film and completed pre-post questionnaires.

RESULTS: After viewing The Integrated Skin Exam film, students demonstrated improved melanoma knowledge, including identification of high-risk demographic groups (61% vs 42.9%, P < .001), high-risk anatomic sites in women (88.6% vs 46.5%, P < .001) and men (92.1% vs 34.8%, P < .001), and the ABCDEs of melanoma (98.4% vs 91.2%, P < .001). Students demonstrated increased confidence in the SCE (66.93% vs 16.40%, P < .001) and augmented intentions to practice it (99.05% vs 13.9%, P < .001). A greater proportion (70.4% vs 41.9%, P < .001) of students thought less than 3 minutes were required to integrate SCE into the routine examination.

LIMITATIONS: Longitudinal impact of the film was not assessed.

CONCLUSION: The Integrated Skin Exam film introduces an integrated approach to the SCE that addresses knowledge gaps, mitigates perceived barriers, and augments intention related to practice of the SCE.


ISE, Integrated Skin Exam, PCP, SCE, integrated skin cancer examination, medical education, medical students, melanoma, primary care physicians, skin cancer examination

DOI of Published Version



J Am Acad Dermatol. 2014 Jan;70(1):115-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jaad.2013.09.028. Link to article on publisher's site.

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology


Full author list omitted for brevity. For the full list of authors, see article.

Co-author Erik Domingues is a medical student at UMass Medical School.

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID