How it works?
Senza categoria

Photography as the Sole Means of Proof: Medical Liability in Dermatology

et al. Maricla Marrone



Malignant melanoma is a cutaneous malignancy resulting from the uncontrolled proliferation of melanocytes and poses a challenge diagnostically because neoplastic lesions can mimic benign lesions, which are much more common in the population.

Doctors, when they suspect the presence of melanoma, arrange for its removal and the performance of a histological examination to ascertain its diagnosis; in cases where the dermatoscopic examination is indicative of benignity, however, after the lesion is removed, histological examination is not always performed, a very dangerous occurrence and a harbinger of further medico-legal problems.

The authors present a court litigation case of an “alleged” failure to diagnose malignant melanoma in a patient who died of brain metastases from melanoma in the absence of a certain location of the primary tumor: the physician who had removed a benign lesion a few months earlier was sued, and only thanks to the presence of photographic documentation was the health care provider able to prove his extraneousness.

The aim of this paper is to formulate a proposal for a dermatological protocol to be followed in cases of excisions of benign skin lesions with a twofold purpose: on the one hand, to be able to prove, in a judicial context, the right action on the part of the sanitarians; on the other hand, to avoid the rise of so-called “defensive medicine”


Diapath Lab Talks | Privacy Policy