Must Know Info About Melanoma

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A new Mayo Clinic study found that there has been an alarming increase
in incidences of melanoma, the most serious type of skin cancer.
According to the study, conducted from 1970 to 2009, melanoma cases
increased eightfold among women and fourfold among men ages 18 to 39.

 

In light of this new study, Dr. Craig Austin, a practicing dermatologist
and dermatopathologist who possesses an intricate understanding of the
effect the sun has on the skin at the cellular level, debunks some of
the most common melanoma myths:

 

Myth: African Americans cannot get melanoma

Truth: Melanoma can occur in African Americans and those with darker
skin tones. In fact, the mortality rate is high in darker skin people
as many don't think it is possible to have skin cancer

Myth: The only way to get melanoma is through sun exposure

Truth: Although sun exposure increases one's risk, melanoma can occur in
areas that are not exposed to the sun

 

Myth: A low SPF offers ample protection

Truth: Higher, broad spectrum SPFs offer the best protection

Myth: A healthy tan prevents one from getting melanoma

Truth: There is no such thing as a health tan - a tan does not prevent
one from getting melanoma

 

Myth: Only large spots and moles can be signs of melanoma

Truth: Small spots and moles can be cancerous. Any black mole, even if
it's small, should be checked by a doctor

Myth: Melanoma is always elevated on the skin

Truth: Cancerous spots or moles are not always elevated and often spread
out flat on the skin

 

Myth: Melanoma has clear-cut symptoms

Truth: Sometimes there are no symptoms

Dr. Austin Weighs In On What Increases Ones Risk:

- Not wearing sunscreen on a regular basis

- Wearing flip flops or other shoes that expose the feet
without sunscreen

- Wearing baseball hats without sunscreen on the ears, the
third most common site for melanoma

- Fair skin, an unusual number of moles, a family history of
melanoma, one or more sever sunburns as a child, and sun exposure

Dr. Austin Offers Self Screening Tips:

- Color: moles and marks should be one color, usually brown. If
they are black, get them checked

- Size: moles and marks should be less then 6-8mm. If they are
greater than 6mm, get them checked

- Symmetry: moles should be a circle or oval and symmetrical.
If they are not, get them checked

- If a mole starts to itch, burn or hurt, get it checked

- If a new mole appears after the age of 40, get it checked as
they typically develop at an early age

 

Dr. Austin Provides Protection Tips:

- Avoid the sun between 10am and 2pm as it is strongest during
these hours

- Apply sunscreen liberally prior to sun exposure

- Reapply sunscreen throughout the day, particularly after
physical activity and/or swimming

- Check areas that are difficult to see, including private
parts and the scalp

 

Cane + Austin's PROTECT SPF 55 Provides Superior Protection and a
Pleasing Aesthetic:

- Provides broad-spectrum UVA and UVB protection against
sunburns

- Counteracts premature aging

- Contains anti-oxidants, such as Green Tea for its
anti-inflammatory properties, and organic UV absorbers

- Features a superior singlet photo-stabilization technology to
protect against free radical damage

- Oil-free, ultra-sheer and weightless, offers an optimal
transparent finish

- Paraben, fragrance and alcohol-free

- Ideal for sensitive skin

Please keep Dr. Austin and PROTECT SPF 55 in mind for any sun care
stories you may be working on.

Article by
Long Island City Dermatologist