Lack of correlation between internists' ability in dermatology and their patterns of treating patients with skin disease

Robert Kirsner, Daniel G. Federman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

35 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background and Design: We determine whether a subset of internists exist who are better at diagnosing skin disease and therefore select themselves to treat the majority of patients with dermatologic disorders. A survey was conducted in which internists reported their self-perception regarding their abilities in dermatology, the amount of dermatology training they had received, and the percentage of patients they encounter with and treat for skin diseases. This was correlated with results from an objective photographic (Kodachrome) examination assessing their diagnostic abilities in dermatology. The setting was university and private practices in Miami, Fla, and New Haven, Conn. The participants were general internists, medical subspecialists, and medical residents. After completing a self-administered questionnaire, each physician then participated in an examination where they were shown 20 color photographs of common skin disorders. We correlate the relationship between the survey variables and the results of the photographic examination. Results: Eighty-four internists diagnosed 50.5% of the diseases correctly. Internists perceive themselves as mediocre in dermatology (2.6, on a scale of 1-5, 5 being the best), which correlated with their poor performance on the photographic evaluation (P=.04). Internists reported having limited education or training in dermatology (>85% having < 1 month of training in or after medical school). There was a trend toward a correlation between the amount of training internists received and their ability in dermatology (P=.07). Notably, there was no correlation between internists' ability in dermatology and the percentage of patients they encounter with and treat for skin disease. Conclusions: Internists receive limited training and have resultant poor performance in diagnosing skin disease. Internists are aware of their limited ability in dermatology as demonstrated by their mediocre self-perceived ability. Notably, no correlation was found between internists' abilities in dermatology and the percentage of patients they encounter and treat for skin disease. Therefore, we did not demonstrate a subset of internists, superior at dermatology, who treat the majority of patients with skin disease. This suggests patients with skin disease may be better served by dermatologists.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1043-1046
Number of pages4
JournalArchives of Dermatology
Volume132
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 18 1996

Fingerprint

Aptitude
Dermatology
Skin Diseases
Private Practice
Medical Schools
Self Concept
Color
Physicians
Education
Skin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology

Cite this

Lack of correlation between internists' ability in dermatology and their patterns of treating patients with skin disease. / Kirsner, Robert; Federman, Daniel G.

In: Archives of Dermatology, Vol. 132, No. 9, 18.09.1996, p. 1043-1046.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{5278bde58e13463f892591a6d2f62337,
title = "Lack of correlation between internists' ability in dermatology and their patterns of treating patients with skin disease",
abstract = "Background and Design: We determine whether a subset of internists exist who are better at diagnosing skin disease and therefore select themselves to treat the majority of patients with dermatologic disorders. A survey was conducted in which internists reported their self-perception regarding their abilities in dermatology, the amount of dermatology training they had received, and the percentage of patients they encounter with and treat for skin diseases. This was correlated with results from an objective photographic (Kodachrome) examination assessing their diagnostic abilities in dermatology. The setting was university and private practices in Miami, Fla, and New Haven, Conn. The participants were general internists, medical subspecialists, and medical residents. After completing a self-administered questionnaire, each physician then participated in an examination where they were shown 20 color photographs of common skin disorders. We correlate the relationship between the survey variables and the results of the photographic examination. Results: Eighty-four internists diagnosed 50.5{\%} of the diseases correctly. Internists perceive themselves as mediocre in dermatology (2.6, on a scale of 1-5, 5 being the best), which correlated with their poor performance on the photographic evaluation (P=.04). Internists reported having limited education or training in dermatology (>85{\%} having < 1 month of training in or after medical school). There was a trend toward a correlation between the amount of training internists received and their ability in dermatology (P=.07). Notably, there was no correlation between internists' ability in dermatology and the percentage of patients they encounter with and treat for skin disease. Conclusions: Internists receive limited training and have resultant poor performance in diagnosing skin disease. Internists are aware of their limited ability in dermatology as demonstrated by their mediocre self-perceived ability. Notably, no correlation was found between internists' abilities in dermatology and the percentage of patients they encounter and treat for skin disease. Therefore, we did not demonstrate a subset of internists, superior at dermatology, who treat the majority of patients with skin disease. This suggests patients with skin disease may be better served by dermatologists.",
author = "Robert Kirsner and Federman, {Daniel G.}",
year = "1996",
month = "9",
day = "18",
doi = "10.1001/archderm.132.9.1043",
language = "English",
volume = "132",
pages = "1043--1046",
journal = "JAMA Dermatology",
issn = "2168-6068",
publisher = "American Medical Association",
number = "9",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Lack of correlation between internists' ability in dermatology and their patterns of treating patients with skin disease

AU - Kirsner, Robert

AU - Federman, Daniel G.

PY - 1996/9/18

Y1 - 1996/9/18

N2 - Background and Design: We determine whether a subset of internists exist who are better at diagnosing skin disease and therefore select themselves to treat the majority of patients with dermatologic disorders. A survey was conducted in which internists reported their self-perception regarding their abilities in dermatology, the amount of dermatology training they had received, and the percentage of patients they encounter with and treat for skin diseases. This was correlated with results from an objective photographic (Kodachrome) examination assessing their diagnostic abilities in dermatology. The setting was university and private practices in Miami, Fla, and New Haven, Conn. The participants were general internists, medical subspecialists, and medical residents. After completing a self-administered questionnaire, each physician then participated in an examination where they were shown 20 color photographs of common skin disorders. We correlate the relationship between the survey variables and the results of the photographic examination. Results: Eighty-four internists diagnosed 50.5% of the diseases correctly. Internists perceive themselves as mediocre in dermatology (2.6, on a scale of 1-5, 5 being the best), which correlated with their poor performance on the photographic evaluation (P=.04). Internists reported having limited education or training in dermatology (>85% having < 1 month of training in or after medical school). There was a trend toward a correlation between the amount of training internists received and their ability in dermatology (P=.07). Notably, there was no correlation between internists' ability in dermatology and the percentage of patients they encounter with and treat for skin disease. Conclusions: Internists receive limited training and have resultant poor performance in diagnosing skin disease. Internists are aware of their limited ability in dermatology as demonstrated by their mediocre self-perceived ability. Notably, no correlation was found between internists' abilities in dermatology and the percentage of patients they encounter and treat for skin disease. Therefore, we did not demonstrate a subset of internists, superior at dermatology, who treat the majority of patients with skin disease. This suggests patients with skin disease may be better served by dermatologists.

AB - Background and Design: We determine whether a subset of internists exist who are better at diagnosing skin disease and therefore select themselves to treat the majority of patients with dermatologic disorders. A survey was conducted in which internists reported their self-perception regarding their abilities in dermatology, the amount of dermatology training they had received, and the percentage of patients they encounter with and treat for skin diseases. This was correlated with results from an objective photographic (Kodachrome) examination assessing their diagnostic abilities in dermatology. The setting was university and private practices in Miami, Fla, and New Haven, Conn. The participants were general internists, medical subspecialists, and medical residents. After completing a self-administered questionnaire, each physician then participated in an examination where they were shown 20 color photographs of common skin disorders. We correlate the relationship between the survey variables and the results of the photographic examination. Results: Eighty-four internists diagnosed 50.5% of the diseases correctly. Internists perceive themselves as mediocre in dermatology (2.6, on a scale of 1-5, 5 being the best), which correlated with their poor performance on the photographic evaluation (P=.04). Internists reported having limited education or training in dermatology (>85% having < 1 month of training in or after medical school). There was a trend toward a correlation between the amount of training internists received and their ability in dermatology (P=.07). Notably, there was no correlation between internists' ability in dermatology and the percentage of patients they encounter with and treat for skin disease. Conclusions: Internists receive limited training and have resultant poor performance in diagnosing skin disease. Internists are aware of their limited ability in dermatology as demonstrated by their mediocre self-perceived ability. Notably, no correlation was found between internists' abilities in dermatology and the percentage of patients they encounter and treat for skin disease. Therefore, we did not demonstrate a subset of internists, superior at dermatology, who treat the majority of patients with skin disease. This suggests patients with skin disease may be better served by dermatologists.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0029821133&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=0029821133&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1001/archderm.132.9.1043

DO - 10.1001/archderm.132.9.1043

M3 - Article

C2 - 8795543

AN - SCOPUS:0029821133

VL - 132

SP - 1043

EP - 1046

JO - JAMA Dermatology

JF - JAMA Dermatology

SN - 2168-6068

IS - 9

ER -