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Does QOL Improve After Interpolated Flap Repair for Nasal Skin Cancer?

Improvement seen in total Skin Cancer Index score, all three subscale scores at 16 weeks after flap takedown versus before MMS

By Dermsquared Editorial Team | August 25, 2021

Patients with nasal skin cancers treated with Mohs micrographic surgery (MMS) and interpolation flap reconstruction have improved quality of life (QOL) 16 weeks after reconstruction, according to a study published online Aug. 25 in JAMA Dermatology.

Tess M. Lukowiak, from the Drexel University College of Medicine in Philadelphia, and colleagues examined patient QOL after MMS and interpolation flap reconstruction for patients with nasal skin cancers in a multicenter prospective survey study. The validated 15-question Skin Cancer Index (SCI) was administered before MMS, one week after flap placement, and at four and 16 weeks after flap takedown. A total of 169 patients aged 18 years or older with a nasal skin cancer who presented for MMS and were anticipated to undergo two-stage interpolated flap repair were enrolled; 147 completed SCI surveys before MMS and at 16 weeks after flap takedown.

The researchers found an improvement in total SCI scores from pre-MMS to 16 weeks after flap takedown, with a mean increase of 13 percent (7.11 points). Significant improvements were seen in all three SCI subscale scores (increases of 3.27, 1.65, and 2.10 points on the emotion, appearance, and social subscales, respectively) at 16 weeks after flap takedown versus before MMS.

"Despite patient anxiety and aesthetic concerns associated with complex reconstruction of nasal defects, physicians who refer patients for surgery on the nose should feel comfortable reassuring patients about their long-term QOL outcomes," the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to the biopharmaceutical industry.

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