For many Texans, spending time outdoors in the sun is a work requirement or simply part of a daily lifestyle. Unfortunately, without proper protection, extensive sun exposure can significantly increase the risk of skin cancer, which can be deadly. To increase awareness about the risks of skin cancer, we would like to share some surprising facts about this disease. You might want to share this information with any friends or family members who spend time outdoors or in tanning booths.
1. According to the CDC, skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States. In fact, skin cancer accounts for as much as 50% of all cancers combined, resulting in 1 million cases of skin cancer being diagnosed each year.
2. Melanoma causes 75% of skin cancer deaths. If it is caught before the tumor penetrates the skin, 99% of those diagnosed survive. If melanoma advances, the survival rate is less than 15%.
3. One or more deep sunburns that causes the skin to blister can double the risk for skin cancer.
4. Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer for adults ages 24-29.
5. Indoor ultraviolet (UV) tanners have a 74% higher chance of a melanoma diagnosis than those who have never used a tanning bed.
6. Skin cancer is most deadly for African Americans, Asians, and Latinos, since skin cancer is often diagnosed at later or advanced stage.
7. Regular exposure to coal tar, pitch, creosote, arsenic compounds, or radium increases your risk of skin cancer.
8. Skin cancer symptoms include any changes in skin including: mole changes, itchiness, tenderness, oozing, bleeding, changes in color, scaliness or pain. When in doubt, have your skin checked out.
9. Skin cancer is highly curable if caught early, and as many as 85-95% of non-melanoma cancers are completely cured.
10. Annual skin cancer screenings can help prevent or catch skin cancer before it becomes dangerous.
Would you like to be screened for skin cancer? Attend our Free Cancer Screening Day on Saturday, April 28, from 8:00 a.m. to noon in the hospital atrium at The Medical Center of Plano. We will also be screening for thyroid cancer, head and neck cancer, and oral cancer. Mammograms will be offered in the Women’s Link Diagnostic Center if scheduled in advance. Call 972-612-6500 to make your appointment. For more information about the event, please visit us online here. For a physician referral, please call 1-855-665-TMCP.