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cancer diagnoses
national cancer institute
american cancer society
indoor tanning beds
history of skin cancer
genetic predisposition
frequent checks
skin cancer
dangerous activities
Skin Cancer Diagnoses On The Rise: Most Preventable Form Of Cancer Is Often Most Overlooked
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Skin Cancer Diagnoses on the Rise: Most Preventable Form Of Cancer is Often Most Overlooked

A new study by the Mayo Clinic reveals some troubling news about skin cancer and the number of people who die from it every year. That study shows a dramatic rise in the number of cases of melanoma with numbers of new cases increasing by four times for men ages 18-39. Even more troubling, the number of melanoma cases involving women has increased eight times in a twenty year span. More than two million people are diagnosed with skin cancer every year. Researchers theorize that there are two possible reasons for the serious increase- the continued use of tanning beds and the earlier detection of many skin cancers. Researchers are now comparing the use of tanning beds to other dangerous activities that include smoking or having unprotected sex.

The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) made a change on tanning beds in 2009, saying then that their use was dangerous. The agency listed them as "carcinogenic to humans" and listed the risk to that of cigarette smoking. A joint study by the National Cancer Institute and the American Cancer Society revealed that people who regularly use indoor tanning beds increase their risk of dangerous skin cancers, including melanoma by seventy five percent. The more frequent the use, the higher the risk increases.

There are other risk factors for melanoma, the most dangerous of all skin cancer types. Those risks include frequent, unprotected sun exposure, a genetic predisposition for cancer in general which increases if there is also a family history of skin cancer and having a lot of moles on the skin. Melanoma is likely to spread, also known as metastasizing to other areas of the body if it is not found and treated aggressively as early as possible.

While visits to a dermatologist can be important there are skin checks that can be done at home as well. Everyone should do frequent checks looking for the A, B, C, D, E of possible skin cancers. Those letters stand for Asymmetry (possible tumors are not evenly shaped) Border ( the edges can appear jagged) Color (typically skin cancer spots are darker but may also appear to be much lighter than surrounding skin tissue), Diameter (skin cancer spots are usually fairly large) and Evolving (a freckle or other spot that suddenly changes any aspect of its appearance should be evaluated as soon as possible.

Dermatologists and others warn against spending prolonged periods of time in the sun, especially at midday when the sun's rays are at their strongest. They also suggest avoiding tanning beds, using a good sun block, proper clothing and a hat and to realize that there is a potential for sun damage on cloudy days.


Street Talk

I lost a very good friend to skin cancer not too far back. This is something everyone should take seriously. Thanks for the info Amie

Reply
  about 8 years ago

The sun's rays are strongest between 10AM and 2PM. And don't think you're too dark-skinned to be exempt. EVERYONE should use some kind of skin protection on the beach -- it's not a joke anymore.

Reply
  about 8 years ago

Thanks for those additions!

Reply
  about 8 years ago
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