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Melanoma Rates Soar Among Younger Women
Date:7/10/2008

Dr. Jeffrey C. Salomon, an assistant clinical professor of plastic surgery at Yale University School of Medicine, said the findings reflect what doctors are seeing in their offices.

"Young people should consider these statistics as a warning that they, too, are susceptible to this potentially dangerous form of skin cancer," Salomon said. And, he added, "The data is similar to the findings of large-scale studies in Australia."

People -- whether young or not -- should take precautions and limit their sun and ultraviolet radiation exposure and incorporate the use of sunscreens containing UVA blocks, Salomon advised.

And people should routinely examine themselves for telltale signs of melanoma, such as suspicious pigmented lesions, Salomon said. "I regularly have patients who have had pigmented lesions noted by themselves or other people that turned out to be a melanoma. Checking yourself and others can save someone's life," he said.

More information

To learn more about melanoma, visit the American Cancer Society.

Steps to Protect Yourself From the Sun

Dr. Robin Ashinoff, medical director of Dermatologic, Mohs, and Laser Surgery at Hackensack University Medical Center in New Jersey, offers the following advice to help prevent melanoma:

  • Don't deliberately sunbathe. There's no such thing as a "safe" tan -- not even from tanning beds.
  • Slip, slop, slap -- slip on a shirt, slop on sunscreen, slap on a hat.
  • Use a sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher.
  • If you have to be tan, for whatever psychological reasons, get a spray tan or put on a self tanner.



SOURCES: Mark Purdue, Ph.D.,
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