Follow-Up Phone Interviews and Attendance Motivation From A Free Head and Neck Cancer Screening

Head and Neck Cancer

Ear Nose Throat J. 2020 Jul 23:145561320940866. doi: 10.1177/0145561320940866. Online ahead of print.


INTRODUCTION: Head and Neck Cancer Awareness and Screening Programs (HNCASP) are popular community outreach events hosted by academic and community otolaryngology departments. However, long-term follow-up of participants is lacking.

PATIENTS AND METHODS: Participants of a HNCASP held at an academic cancer center prospectively filled out demographic and risk factor surveys followed by HNC screening examination. A phone interview was conducted for participants between 2012 and 2016 with suspicious findings to assess outcomes.

RESULTS: Participants were largely Caucasian, female, and had health insurance, reflecting the setting at an academic medical center. Despite this, there were 156 (16.8%) positive screenings; 47 of these completed follow up interviews. Twelve (1.1% of all participants) cancer cases were confirmed.

DISCUSSION: A significant proportion of HNCASP participants benefited from this screening opportunity. Education regarding HNC is the primary benefit and motivational factor for attendance of HNCASPs, although a significant subset of patients was identified that needed follow-up, and several cancers were detected.