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Consumer Alert: Dermatologists Warn Skin Cancer is an Equal-Opportunity Health Threat
Date:5/4/2009

ith basal cell carcinoma in his practice could be getting more ultraviolet (UV) radiation from tanning beds, which studies show is also linked to an increased risk in melanoma.

"I think these findings of an increased incidence of basal cell carcinomas in younger people is representative of what you would find across North America if a large-scale study was conducted," said Dr. Rivers. "We probably would notice even higher rates in areas where year-round sun exposure is more prevalent, such as the southern parts of the United States."

Dr. Rivers added that it is important for young people to be vigilant about practicing proper sun protection and limiting their sun exposure, whether to natural or artificial sunlight. This advice is especially important for people diagnosed with skin cancer, as non-melanoma skin cancer increases a person's risk for developing future skin cancers, including melanoma.

Increasing Rates of Melanoma in People of Color

According to estimates from the American Cancer Society, one American dies of melanoma almost every hour (every 62 minutes). While melanoma can strike anyone, Caucasians are more likely to be diagnosed with melanoma than other races. However, new research suggests that melanoma rates among Hispanics and African-Americans may be increasing in certain populations.

In a study comparing state and national melanoma incidence trends, Dr. Kirsner examined data from the Florida Cancer Data System (FCDS) and the National Cancer Institute's Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) program that compiles cancer statistics from geographic areas across the country - representing 26 percent of the U.S. population. A retrospective trend analysis comparing age-
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SOURCE American Academy of Dermatology
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