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Even Young Teens Show Signs of Sun Damage
Date:4/14/2012

p>Dr. David Leffell, a professor of dermatology and otolaryngology and plastic surgery at the Yale School of Medicine, said that if it were priced right, the technology could indeed help "lead to a recognition that sun protection is important." Currently, such systems cost about $20,000.

"It is true that the appearance of sun-damaged skin in these images is frightening, and patient response is often shock," Leffell noted. "The pediatric population of course is especially important to communicate this message to, and the photographs -- if the price can be brought down -- is a good idea."

But, for the time being, price remains an issue, said Dr. David Pariser, past president of the American Academy of Dermatology Association and a professor of dermatology at Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk, Va.

"It's not an inexpensive modality. So, I'm not sure about the practicality of rolling this out as a screening tool," Pariser said.

"I've used UV photography myself during clinical research, and it certainly is a very dramatic way to show sun damage," Pariser added. "It's sort of like looking at yourself 15 or 20 years later. In fact, I've never had anyone who's seen a photograph of himself who's not reacted by saying they will stop exposing themselves to the harmful effects of the sun."

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For more on melanoma, visit the U.S. National Library of Medicine.

SOURCES: Robert Dellavalle, M.D., Ph.D., M.S.P.H., investigator, University of Colorado Cancer Center, and associate professor, dermatology, University of Colorado School of Medicine, Denver; Ryan G. Gamble, M.D., dermatology resident, University of Colorado, Denver; David Pariser, M.D., F.A.A.D., past president, American Academy of Dermatology Association, and professor, dermatology, Eastern Virginia Medical School, Norfolk, Va.; David J. Leffell, M.D., pr
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