To the Editor.—
In their article in the March 1991 issue of the Archives surveying the reasons for the delay in the presentation of patients with symptoms of a possible malignant melanoma, Hennrikus et al1 failed to comment on their most amazing finding.They quote the incidence of malignant melanoma in Australia as being approximately 18 per 100 000 subjects per year, yet, in their study, five of 1344 subjects were apparently diagnosed as having a malignant melanoma in a 12-month period. This would suggest an annual incidence of 372 cases per 100 000.Was any attempt made to verify the diagnosis of malignant melanoma in their five patients? Or can the incidence of malignant melanoma in New South Wales really be this high?If the diagnoses were correct, it suggests that the population they studied was atypical.
Long C. The Incidence of Malignant Melanoma in New South Wales. Arch Dermatol. 1992;128(2):271. doi:10.1001/archderm.1992.01680120147022