Knowledge of the factors that influence early detection of melanoma is important in developing strategies to reduce associated mortality.To identify sociodemographic, behavioural and medical care-related factors associated with melanoma thickness in a low incidence population but with a high case fatality.In a multi-center, retrospective, survey-based study of 202 patients with a recent diagnosis of invasive melanoma (< 1 year), we collected data on demographic and behavioural factors, attitudes towards prevention, access to medical care, frequency of skin self-examination (SSE) and physician skin examination (PSE) in relation to melanoma thickness.Thinner tumours (= 1 mm) (80 melanomas) were associated with female gender (P = 0·049), non-nodular (SSM, LMM and ALM) histologic subtypes (P < 0·001), absence of ulceration (P = 0·001), and location other than lower extremity or trunk location (P = 0·004). Patients married at the time of diagnosis or who performed SSE during the year prior to diagnosis were more likely to have thinner tumours than those who did not (OR 3·45; 95% CI 1·48-8·04 and OR 2·43; 95% CI 1·10-5·34, respectively). Full body skin examination by a physician was not significantly associated with thinner melanoma (OR 1·99; 95% CI 0·66-6·07).SSE was shown to be an important factor in the detection of thin melanoma, in contrast to partial or full body PSE which did not show any statistically significant effect on tumour thickness. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
View details for DOI 10.1111/bjd.13068
View details for Web of Science ID 000344007500028
View details for PubMedID 24749902