Skin Cancer Facts: 8 Things You May Not Have Known by Joyce Knestrick, CRNP, FAANP

Cancer Family Health
5 years ago

Skin Cancer Facts: 8 Things You May Not Have Known

Skin cancer is the most common cancer in the U.S. More than five million cases are diagnosed every year, and 90 percent are the result of the sun’s ultraviolet radiation. Since one in five Americans will be diagnosed by the time they’re 70, here’s what you need to know:

  • Melanoma can be genetic. Family history increases your risk by 50 percent.
  • Your features increase your risk. Fair skin, freckling, light hair and eyes make you more susceptible.
  • Sun history matters. Five sunburns increase melanoma risk by 80 percent.
  • Moles are an indicator. Having more than 100 moles is a red flag.
  • But it’s not always moles. Only 30 percent of melanomas are found in moles.
  • Regular SPF use is critical. Daily sunscreen reduces your risk by 50 percent.
  • The odds change. Before age 50, women are at higher risk. After age 50, men are.
  • Early detection is key. Found early, cure rates exceed 95 percent. 

It’s never too late to practice safe sun health! Call your provider if you are concerned about your risk, or if something doesn’t look right. Remember, sun exposure is the easiest risk factor to control!

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