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Skin Cancer Prevention Update:
Date:11/8/2007

law calls for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to determine if the current language and positioning of warning labels on indoor tanning devices is adequate to effectively warn consumers of the known dangers of indoor tanning, including the risk of skin cancer.

"The indoor tanning industry is a $5 billion industry that attracts nearly 30 million users in the U.S. annually -- 2.3 million of which are teens," said Dr. Read. "The Academy worked diligently with congressional leaders to develop this important bill, and we commend President Bush and all of the bill's sponsors for their commitment to reducing the incidence of skin cancer and helping save countless lives. By law, the indoor tanning industry will be accountable to consumers and present the facts about the dangers of their products."

The new law will require the FDA to conduct consumer testing to "determine consumer understanding of label warnings." It further requires the Secretary of Health and Human Services to report back to Congress in one year with the results, including "the measures being implemented by the Secretary to significantly reduce the risks associated with indoor tanning devices."

FDA's 2007 Proposed Sunscreen Rule

In an effort to improve the information available to consumers when purchasing sunscreen, the FDA proposed new regulations for formulating, testing and labeling over-the-counter sunscreens that the Academy believes will help the public make knowledgeable decisions about protecting themselves from the dangers of the sun. Since the FDA released the sunscreen monograph in 1999, the Academy has urged the FDA to include requirements for ultraviolet A (UVA) coverage in sunscreens and to increase the SPF allowed for sunscreens -- both of which are addressed in the 2007 Proposed Sunscreen rule.

Sunlight consists of two types of harmful rays -- UVA rays and UVB rays. The UVB rays are the sun's burning rays (which are blocked by window glass) and are
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SOURCE American Academy of Dermatology
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