Although excessive UV [ultraviolet] radiation exposure is associated with skin cancer, some melanoma survivors report indoor tanning and getting sunburns, according to a study published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention.1
To evaluate ultraviolet radiation exposure and protection behaviors among long-term melanoma survivors, researchers recruited 724 survivors from a previously conducted case-control study to take part in a cross-sectional survey. Investigators identified 660 matched controls to complete the follow-up survey.
Melanoma survivors were 28% less likely to report high sun exposure on a typical weekday (odds ratio [OR], 0.72; 95% CI, 0.55-0.94), 60% less likely to report sunburns (OR, 0.40; 95% CI, 0.30-0.53), and 80% less likely to participate in indoor tanning (OR, 0.20; 95% CI, 0.09-0.44) compared with controls. The rate of high sun exposure on a typical weekend was similar between the 2 groups.
Nearly 62% of survivors reported wearing sunscreen often or always compared with only about 38% of controls, though almost 20% of melanoma survivors reported having sunburns within the previous year.
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Ten percent of survivors reported intentional sun-tanning.
The findings suggest a need for additional interventions and education to improve sun protection among melanoma survivors to reduce the risk of developing future melanomas.
- Isaksson Vogel R, Strayer LG, Engelman L, et al. Sun Exposure and protection behaviors among long-term melanoma survivors and population controls. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarker Prev. 2017 March 2. doi: 10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-16-0854 [Epub ahead of print]