Indian Journal of Dermatology
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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 62  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 29-32

Interdepartmental dermatology: Characteristics and impact of dermatology inpatient referrals at a teaching hospital in Eastern India

Department of Dermatology, Venereology and Leprosy, Medical College and Hospitals, Kolkata, West Bengal, India

Correspondence Address:
Prof. Debabrata Bandyopadhyay
Department of Dermatology, Venereology and Leprosy, Medical College and Hospitals, 88, College Street, Kolkata - 700 073, West Bengal
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0019-5154.198044

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Background: Dermatology is primarily considered to be an outpatient-centered specialty. However, several inpatient admissions to other specialties require dermatologic consultation for optimum management. Aims: To analyze the causes of inpatient dermatology referrals, departments sending referrals, and impact of dermatology consultation on patient management. Materials and Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional study by analyzing the records of 486 patient referrals over a 4-year period. The demographic details, specialties requesting consultation, cause of referral, and dermatological advice have been recorded and analyzed. Results: Dermatology consultation changed the dermatologic diagnosis and treatment of almost two-thirds of patients. General medicine requested the maximum number of referrals, “skin rash” being the most common cause for referral. Accurate diagnosis on referrals was provided by only 30.2% of nondermatologists. Common dermatological disorders were often misdiagnosed by these physicians, and dermatology referrals had significant impact on the diagnosis and subsequent management of these patients. Conclusion: While dermatologic referral leads to improved patient care, there is a need for better training of nondermatologists enabling them to recognize and treat common dermatoses.

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