Completeness of histopathology reporting of melanoma in a high-incidence geographical region
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Background: Appropriate histopathology reporting helps to ensure effective therapy and prognosis. Objective: Toexamine compliance with clinical practice guidelines for histopathology reports of melanomas. Methods: A sample of melanoma histopathology reports in Queensland was audited for inclusion of recommended information. The quality of documentation was constructed and multivariate analysis used to determine factors affecting the quality of reporting practices. Results: Documentation of the most important features of melanoma was high: clear diagnosis (99.8%; 95% CI 98.6-100), thickness (99.8%; 95% CI 98.6-100), comment on adequacy of excision (87.9%; 95% CI 84.9-91.0) and measurement of margins (91.9%; 95% CI 88.8-91.4). Overall reporting of ulceration and regression was of lesser completeness (83.0 and 77.8%, respectively) and these features were more likely to be reported by high-volume laboratories (p < 0.001 and p = 0.037, respectively). This trend was not apparent for other features. Fewer than 50% of reports documented mitotic rate per square millimetre, predominant cell type, microsatellites, growth phase and desmoplasia. Conclusion: Awareness of current reporting practices and identification of areas in which insufficiencies exist enable the revision of systems and potential improvements to the transfer of information to treating clinicians.
Medical and Health Sciences not elsewhere classified