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SunAWARE Presentation. Sun Protection & Skin Cancer: An Overview. Skin Cancer: Fast Facts. 3.5 million contracted by 2 million people every year An “under-recognized” epidemic. Skin Cancer: Fast Facts.

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sunaware presentation

SunAWARE Presentation

Sun Protection & Skin Cancer: An Overview

skin cancer fast facts
Skin Cancer: Fast Facts

3.5 million contracted by 2 million people every year

An “under-recognized” epidemic

skin cancer fast facts3
Skin Cancer: Fast Facts

Each year there are more new cases of skin cancer than the combined incidence of cancers of the breast, prostate, lung and colon.

One in five Americans will develop skin cancer in the course of a lifetime.

skin cancer fast facts4
Skin Cancer: Fast Facts

Between 40 and 50 percent of Americans who live to age 65 will have skin cancer at least once.

In 2004, the total direct cost associated with the treatment for non-melanoma skin cancers was $1.5 billion.

In 2004, total direct costs for treatment of melanoma was almost $1 billion.

Doesn’t include indirect costs of care giving and lost productivity that reaches into the billions.

causes of skin cancer
Causes of Skin Cancer

Almost always results from unprotected exposure to UVR, including tanning beds.

Intense intermittent exposure a serious risk factor.

Skin type, freckles and moles create risk

Age is considered a risk factor

(American Cancer Society)

skin cancer in new york
Skin Cancer in New York

The Good News & the Bad News

the good news
The Good News

Melanoma accounts for only 3% of all cancers in NY men

Melanoma acoounts for only 2.5 % of all cancers in NY women

Mortality rates have remained steady over time (NY Dept of Health)

the bad news
The Bad News

The incidence of Melanoma in New York is on the rise. (National Cancer Institute)

Melanoma is the most common cancer diagnosed in ages 20-34 in NY

some caveats
Some Caveats

Credible evidence that melanoma is under-reported.

Patients often seen in doctors’ offices, not hospitals (source of cancer counting)

NCI stats don’t report incidence of usually non-fatal basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcimona.

skin cancer population segments overview
Skin Cancer & Population Segments (overview)

outdoor workers

baby boomers



people of color

outdoor workers
Outdoor Workers

Outdoor workers experience twice the amount of nonmelanoma skin cancers (basal cell carcinomas and squamous cell carcinomas ) as indoor workers. (Skin Cancer Foundation)

Occupational groups at increased risk for exposure to UV light on the job are far less likely to receive skin examinations. (American Academy of Dermatology)

conclusion by researchers who looked at available data
Conclusion by researchers who looked at available data

“There is considerable room for improvement in occupational sun protection. Some workers take precautions while working outdoors in the sun, but the vast majority of outdoor workers studied in the United States, Canada, and the Mediterranean region do not practice adequate or any sun safety. Sun protection may not yet be a priority in most outdoor work environments in these countries.”

Karen Glanz, David B. Buller, Mona Saraiya

baby boomers
Baby Boomers
  • adults over age 50 have greatest risk of developing skin cancers
  • 44 percent of screened individuals diagnosed with melanoma were men over age fifty (AAD screenings 1985-2000)
  • A sunburn during middle age or later may be the one that triggers skin cancer
  • Baby boomers are the hardest to reach without the help of the media. A national media campaign about skin cancers - including ads specifically targeted to baby boomers and older adults- could boost the use of prevention methods and help lower mortality rates by providing information about detection methods.
  • teens do not limit their time in the sun, nor do they regularly use sunscreen or other methods of sun protection (Johnson, et al 2001)
  • 75% of people who use tanning beds are in their teens and 20s
  • melanoma is now diagnosed more frequently in this age group than any other cancer
  • “ Recommendations in the United States for improved sun protection and avoidance of tanning beds and sunburning, which began in the early 1990s, have been primarily unheeded. Nationally coordinated campaigns with strong policy components must be developed and sustained to prevent skin cancer in a new generation of children and adolescents.” (Pediatrics, Vol 109)
young children parents
Young Children/Parents
  • 23 percent of lifetime exposure to UVR happens before age 18
  • damage is significant and can be compounded by subsequent exposure
  • vitamin D is essential for strong bones and calcium absorbtion
  • Sun protective clothing most effective method of prevention
  • National Council on Skin Cancer prevention recommends supplements for vitamin D
  • It is never too early to begin skin cancer prevention and detection education

Acronym is short & easy to remember;

“AWARE” includes simple steps to detect & prevent skin cancer.

Includes latest sun protection advice.

Endorsed by leading anti-skin cancer professional organizations.

Peer reviewed.

  • AVOID unprotected exposure at any time and seek shade
  • WEAR sun protective clothing including a hat with a three-inch brim and sunglasses
  • Apply broad spectrum sunscreen with an SPF 30+ and reapply every two hours while exposed
  • Routinely check your skin, understand the need for vitamin D, and report any concerns to a health care provider
  • Educate others about need the need for sun protection

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See our website at

Or follow us on twitter @sunaware