Sun safety and skin cancer
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Sun Safety and Skin Cancer:. How You Can Make a Difference. Skin Cancer Work Group 2006 - 2007. Overview. Skin Cancer in Maine Melanoma in Maine Types of Skin Cancer What Does Melanoma Look Like? Who is at Risk? Risk Factors Prevention Points to Remember What You Can Do.

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Sun Safety and Skin Cancer:

How You Can Make a Difference

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  • Skin Cancer in Maine

  • Melanoma in Maine

  • Types of Skin Cancer

  • What Does Melanoma Look Like?

  • Who is at Risk? Risk Factors

  • Prevention

  • Points to Remember

  • What You Can Do

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Skin Cancer In Maine

  • Skin Cancer is the most common cancer in Maine.

    Basal Cell & Squamous cell skin cancer.

  • Melanoma is the deadliest form but is much less common than other types of skin cancer.

  • In 2006, almost 400 Mainers will be diagnosed with melanoma.

  • The rate of melanoma in Maine has tripled since the 1990s.

  • The average age of patients with melanoma is early 40’s.

  • Almost 50 people die every year from melanoma in Maine.

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Skin Cancer in Maine (con’t)

  • Relative 5-year survival rate for patients with basal or squamous cell is more than 95-99%.

  • Relative 5-year survival rate for patients diagnosed with melanoma is 91%, early stage 98%, regional stage 60%, distant stage 16%, 83% diagnosed in local stage.

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Asymmetry: one half of a mole is different from the other.

Border: edges of mole are irregular-ragged, blurred or notched.

Color: pigmentation of mole is varied and may be brown and black with red, white or blue, creating a mottled appearance.

Diameter: width is usually greater than six millimeters-about the size of a pencil eraser. Also look for an increase in the size of a mole.

Evolving: any change – in size, shape, color, elevation or another trait or any new symptom such as bleeding, itching or crusting – points to danger.

ABCDEs of Melanoma

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Who Is at Risk?

Although anyone can develop skin cancer, some people are at particular risk. Risk factors include

  • Light skin color, hair color, or eye color.

  • Family history of skin cancer.

  • Personal history of skin cancer.

  • Chronic exposure to the sun.

  • History of sunburns early in life.

  • Certain types of moles, or a large number of moles.

  • Freckles, which indicate sun sensitivity and sun damage.

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Prevention of Skin Cancer

  • Avoid unprotected exposure to the sun, especially between 10 -4, when the rays are the strongest.

  • Block out the sun by using sunscreen of SPF 15 or higher, and reapply every two hours.

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Prevention of Skin Cancer (cont’)

  • Cover your body with long-sleeved shirts and long pants.

  • Wear a broad brimmed hat and sunglasses with UV-protection lenses.

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Points to Remember

  • It’s better to prevent skin cancer and melanoma than to treat it

    Minimize sun exposure: shade, cover, sunscreen

  • Perform regular self-exams to catch any suspicious moles or other lesions as early as possible

  • If you find something that looks suspicious see your physician as soon as possible

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How You Can Make a Difference!

  • Model sun safe behaviors and attitudes

  • Lead by example

  • Educate others about sun safety

  • Develop and implement sun safety procedures/guidelines

  • Join the Maine Cancer Consortium Skin Cancer Work Group

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Skin Cancer Resources