Melanoma: A Pathologist's Perspective
With summer upon us it is time to think about sun safety. An alarming recent report found rates of new melanoma have doubled over the past three decades. It is estimated that education and awareness of the dangers could prevent 20 percent of new cases between 2020 and 2030, according to the CDC report. Without prevention programs rates will continue to increase.
Melanoma Facts Skin cancer is the number one cancer in the US. Over 9,000 Americans die each year due to melanoma. In 2011 there were more than 65,000 new cases. UV radiation from the sun or tanning beds accounts for 90% of cases. Risk doubles if an individual has had five or more sunburns, or one blistering sunburn at a young age. Other risk factors include fair skin, numerous moles, a family history of unusual moles or melanoma.
Experts recommend using the “ABCDE rule” to help determine when you should see a physician regarding a suspicious mole or changing skin lesion. Look for the following signs:
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