Apparently trained practicing dermatologists can accurately diagnose a wide variety of skin tumors. A representative group was found to be correct in 85% of the cases when first and second choices as to clinical diagnosis are considered. When only first choice is evaluated the percentage accuracy is only 5% less at 80%.
While a high degree of clinical accuracy was established, this finding should not exclude judicious use of pathologic study. By combining a clinician's impression with a pathologist's interpretation the over-all final diagnostic accuracy can rise to a level approaching 100%.
FREEMAN RG, KNOX JM. Clinical Diagnosis of Skin Tumors by Dermatologists. Arch Dermatol. 1963;87(3):350–356. doi:10.1001/archderm.1963.01590150066011
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