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Many Survivors of Localized Melanoma Fear Recurrence

Thirty-eight of 51 survivors had FCRI-SF score above the threshold for clinical fear of cancer recurrence

By Dermsquared Editorial Team | February 14, 2024

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 14, 2024 -- Many survivors of localized melanoma have a clinical fear of cancer recurrence, according to a study published online Feb. 14 in JAMA Dermatology.

Ayisha N. Mahama, M.D., M.P.H., from the Dell Medical School at the University of Texas in Austin, and colleagues explored the lived experiences and fear of cancer recurrence among survivors of localized cutaneous melanoma in a qualitative and survey-based study using semistructured interviews and the Fear of Cancer Recurrence Inventory short form (FCRI-SF) survey tool.

Fifty-one patients with a history of localized melanoma completed the interview and survey; 33 percent had survived a diagnosis of stage 0 melanoma and the rest had at least one invasive melanoma (stage I to IIA) diagnosis. The researchers identified themes in the semistructured interviews: emotions surrounding follow-up appointments; intensity of melanoma surveillance; lifestyle change relating to sun exposure; and thoughts regarding life and death. Of the participants, 38 had an FCRI-SF score above the threshold for clinical fear of cancer recurrence.

"These findings underscore the importance of addressing the psychological well-being of patients with early melanoma and potentially implementing supportive interventions," the authors write.


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