Sun protective behavior use in organ transplantrecipients current practices in a high-risk population

Elizabeth K. Petitt, Nancy P. Wingo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Skin cancer is amajor public health issue due to the impact of skin-cancer-related disease, death, and costs to the healthcare system. Organ transplant recipients (OTRs) have higher rates of nonmelanoma skin cancer occurrence, recurrence, andmetastasis than the general population. Ultraviolet exposure remains the primary risk factor in the development of posttransplant nonmelanoma skin cancer. A review of the current literature to examine the use of sun protective behaviors (SPBs) in OTRs and to investigate factors influencing these behaviors was performed. After careful selection, we chose the 10 most relevant articles addressing the use of SPB in OTRs. Two important practice gaps identified were a lack of efficacious OTR skin cancer prevention education and the lack of SPB use reinforcement in OTRs. Strategies to address these gaps include (a) clinician use of risk stratification to identify those patients at the highest risk of skin cancer development, (b) clinician use of targeted educational tools known to promote behavioral change, and (c) reinforcement of SPB at follow-up appointments. Continued evidence-based analysis is needed to discover if improving the use of SPBs in OTRs can actually decrease their long-term skin cancer rate.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)97-112
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of the Dermatology Nurses' Association
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1 2018


  • Organ Transplant Recipients
  • Skin Cancer
  • Skin Cancer Awareness
  • Sun Protection
  • Sun Protective Behaviors
  • Sunscreen Use

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Advanced and Specialized Nursing


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