Surgeon General Calls to Reduce Skin Cancer Rates

Surgeon General Calls to Reduce Skin Cancer Rates

Skin cancer screening – SF0878

A report recently released by the surgeon general addresses the alarming rise of skin cancer with an immediate call to action against the most commonly diagnosed and preventable cancer in the country.  It is estimated that skin cancer treatments cost $8.1 billion annually, with almost 5 million Americans requiring treatment and nearly 9,000 deaths from melanoma every year.  The report outlines the increase of incidence rates, especially among young adults, due to outdoor sun exposure and increased popularity of indoor tanning.  The call to action identifies opportunities to reduce UV exposure through public awareness and community involvement, which may include wearing protective clothing and sunscreen, installing structures to provide shade in public areas, or even modifying school policies for the time of day children play outside.

Surgeon General Calls to Reduce Skin Cancer Rates
Malignant melanoma – RA0777

Basal cell carcinoma is the most common form of skin cancer, but is also the most treatable.  Squamous cell carcinoma affects cells in the superficial layers of the skin, and can be treated with many of the same methods as basal cell carcinoma, including cutting out the affected area, freezing the cancer cells, or skin cream medications. Melanoma is the third most common type of skin cancer, and is responsible for the most skin cancer deaths if it becomes malignant and spreads to other systems in the body.

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