EADV News 70 Spring 2019

as intuition, compassion and sound judgement. Digital dermatology offers many solutions while posing new questions that remain to be answered. I like to consider digital technologies as an additional equipment of choice that may facilitate physician diagnosis, save time in clinical practice and standardise high diagnostic accuracy, so that we may ultimately provide better services for our patients. Personalisation of care Incorporating the enormous possibilities of digital technology will help us become better and more complete physicians, relieving us from the small, trivial tasks that take up our time and helping us provide holistic and personalised care.

By recognising it as a useful tool and by integrating it in our everyday practice, we can ensure that the future of our specialty remains promising and exciting! l

by the “intrusion” of technology in the patient-physician relationship and the potential replacement of physician judgement in the decision-making process when it comes to diagnostic or therapeutic considerations. AI: the patients’ view And how do patients react? As they too have to accept the new digital reality in their life, they have become increasingly more open to the concept of digital dermatology and have accepted it as part of the process of interacting with their dermatologist. A variety of eHealth- related tools that improve patient care or treatment adherence (digital diaries, symptom trackers, screening tools), provide accurate information (websites, webinars) and/or connect patients have been quite popular and help fill the gaps where access to expert medical care is inadequate. So, will dermatologists be overshadowed by digital technology in the diagnosis of skin diseases? I, like many of you, do not think so. Even though images (clinical or dermoscopical) are an essential part of dermatologic diagnosis, they form only one part of the decision- making equation. The patient’s history and personality, his/her lifestyle habits and practices are the cornerstone to a correct diagnosis. This information may often become available only through a profound physician-patient relationship that is founded on trust and confidence - a relationship that allows the patient to reveal the causes of his ailment and provide the physician with the insight for the correct diagnosis and choice of treatment. Being physicians and taking care of patients is not only about knowledge or experience, but it is also about using fundamentally human traits such > Trust comes through human interaction

Alexander J Stratigos MD EADV President-Elect (2018-2020)

Prof Alexander Stratigos


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