Risk behaviour and patient preferences for an improved non-melanoma skin cancer prevention modality for organ-transplanted patients: a European, multi-country, online patient community study

Eur J Dermatol. 2019 Oct 1;29(5):518-523. doi: 10.1684/ejd.2019.3639.


Immunosuppressants used in organ transplant patients increase the risk of non-melanoma skin cancer. This study aimed to evaluate patient behaviours towards skin cancer prevention methods and to understand characteristics of a future prevention strategy based on patients' perspective. Carenity, a global online patient community, enabled the recruitment of 200 adult patients with solid organ transplants from four European countries: France, Italy, Spain and Germany. Most patients were well informed about the risk of skin cancer, but only 27% (53/200) monitored their skin. Most patients exposed themselves to intense sun exposure once a month or more. Nevertheless, more than half of patients were motivated to use additional prevention strategies and limit their sun exposure. The most appropriate prevention strategy was reported to be the use of a cosmetically attractive, water-resistant, paraben/fragrance-free cream. A one-size-fits-all approach is not an appropriate prevention strategy and an adapted approach based on patients' preferences may significantly contribute to better compliance and adherence.

Keywords: NMSC; keratinocyte cancer; non-melanoma skin cancer; organ transplantation; preventive treatment; skin protection.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Europe
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Health Surveys / methods
  • Humans
  • Immunocompromised Host
  • Immunosuppressive Agents / adverse effects
  • Internet
  • Middle Aged
  • Organ Transplantation
  • Patient Compliance / psychology*
  • Patient Preference / psychology*
  • Risk Factors
  • Risk-Taking*
  • Skin Neoplasms / prevention & control*
  • Sunscreening Agents / therapeutic use*


  • Immunosuppressive Agents
  • Sunscreening Agents