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Study finds dramatic rise in skin cancer among middle-aged adults
Date:2/4/2014

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The steepest increase in melanoma occurred in the last decade covered by the study, 2000 to 2009. The uptick, researchers speculate, may be connected to the popularization of tanning beds in the 1980s and 1990s.

"There's been a cultural trend for many decades in which people connect being tan with being fit and even successful," says Brewer. This trend could be one of the reasons, Dr. Brewer says, that melanoma has become so prevalent in the groups he has studied.

The current study follows on the heels of last year's findings, in which Dr. Brewer's team noted alarming rates of melanoma in young adults, ages 18 to 39. His group will continue to track the trend of melanoma and survival rates among adults over 60.

Skin cancer can be prevented. Dr. Brewer gives four simple ways to improve your chances of preventing skin cancer:

  1. Avoid the use of tanning beds
  2. Use sunscreen
  3. Be familiar with your skin by performing frequent self-skin examinations
  4. Check in with your dermatologist annually

These messages of prevention are important for people of all ages. Refer to Mayo Clinic's cartoon-style PSA to help explain the importance of skin cancer prevention and being "sun smart" to kids or teens.


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Contact: Alyson Gonzalez
newsbureau@mayo.edu
507-284-5005
Mayo Clinic
Source:Eurekalert

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