Basic Dermatology Curriculum: Paucity of LBGT Health-Related Content

Investigators analyzed the American Academy of Dermatology's online Dermatology Curriculum, consisting of modules associated with learner quizzes.

There is a paucity of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) health-related content in the basic dermatology curriculum, according to the results of a cross-sectional study of the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) online Basic Dermatology Curriculum, which contains case-based modules and was created by the AAD in collaboration with the Society for Pediatric Dermatology (SPD). The results of this study were published in JAMA Dermatology.

Most of the AAD curriculum modules contain an associated learner quiz, which allows students to evaluate their knowledge upon completion of a particular module. All of the relevant dermatology curriculum modules and quizzes assessed in this study were downloaded from the AAD’s Basic Dermatology Curriculum Website — — on November 17, 2017.

The curriculum comprised 293 patients, with 157 in 40 modules and 136 from 36 quizzes, including 121 pediatric patients. Overall, 0.3% (1 of 293) of the cases mentioned an LGBT patient — a woman with basal cell carcinoma who was in a same-sex marriage. None of the cases included a transgender patient, referred to same-sex sexual behavior, or mentioned sexual orientation.

This study demonstrates the near-absence of LGBT-related material in the AAD’s and SPD’s Basic Dermatology Curriculum. This represents a missed opportunity to educate medical students on providing medically appropriate, culturally competent care to the LGBT population in dermatology settings. The paucity of data might also signal that LGBT health is not important in the field of dermatology to medical students who are possibly interested in pursuing a dermatology specialty, as well as to residents, dermatology faculty, and other educators.

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The investigators concluded that other dermatology-related educational materials not evaluated in this study might include more LGBT health-related content. They suggest that graduate and continuing medical education in dermatology need to incorporate LGBT health-related content into their curricula in order to help dermatologists provide appropriate care for this group of patients.


Park AJ, Katz KA. Paucity of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender health-related content in the basic dermatology curriculum [published March 28, 2018]. JAMA Dermatol. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2017.6531