People of Color Need Sun Protection to Avoid Skin Cancer

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People of Color Need Sun Protection to Avoid Skin Cancer
People of Color Need Sun Protection to Avoid Skin Cancer

(HealthDay News) — Although skin cancer is less prevalent among people of color than in whites, sun protection and other preventive measures are essential components of skin care in these populations, according to research published online January 30 in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.

Oma N. Agbai, MD, of the Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, and colleagues reviewed the literature on skin cancer in people of color and presented recommendations for photoprotection and other preventive measures.

The researchers found that lack of awareness, diagnosis at more advanced stages, and barriers to accessing care may contribute to the increased morbidity and mortality associated with skin cancer in people of color compared with whites. Regardless of ethnicity or socioeconomic status, physicians must promote preventive strategies for skin cancer in all patients. Public education campaigns targeted to people of color should stress the importance of using photoprotection, avoiding tanning bed use, and doing self-skin examinations to allow early skin cancer detection and treatment.

"An understanding of the varying clinical presentations of ultraviolet-related skin cancers in people of color, in addition to relevant topics in photoaging and ultraviolet-related disorders of pigmentation, is necessary for adequate management of photoprotection in people of color," the authors write.

Several study authors disclosed financial ties to pharmaceutical and/or skin care companies.

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