Introduction: Facial skin cancer and its treatment can affect facial aesthetics and function. Although many studies have demonstrated good post-operative outcomes following facial skin cancer resection and repair based upon clinical examination findings, the patients’ perception and satisfaction remains to be reported.
Aim: In order to investigate the level of patient satisfaction following resection and repair, a retrospective study was undertaken by means of a questionnaire.
Method: A postal questionnaire was sent to all 141 patients who had undergone major resection of facial skin cancer and repair with either skin grafts or local flaps over a 5 year period. The subjects, all at least 6 months after surgery, were asked whether their facial aesthetics and function were affected with respect to their expectations. They responded on an appropriate visual analogue scale (−10 to +10).
Result: A 61% response rate was achieved with 86 of the 141 patients responding. The level of satisfaction for both appearance (mean score of +6.98, SD 4.34, range −10 to +10) and function (mean score of +7.58, SD 3.4, range −10 to +10) were above normal. A detailed analysis of the results and their implications will be presented and discussed.
Conclusions: Despite the suffering the implications of surgical resection of sizeable facial cancer and its subsequent repair (with some including undesirable complications of surgery), our local survey demonstrated reasonable levels of patient satisfaction. This survey has also highlighted that patient perceptions may be different from the clinician’s expectations.
Conflict of interest: None declared.