To bring you this public service message
how many of us remember getting bad, blistering sunburns as children? how many of us have used, or still use tanning beds? how many of us are not
very diligent about using sunscreen?
I have never used a tanning bed, however I can answer "Yes" to the other two questions and even answering Yes to one of the above puts you at added risk for skin cancer.
Before Nicole was diagnosed with Melanoma, I rarely, if ever gave skin cancer a thought and even when I did, I had little knowledge of what skin cancer is. And Melanoma? I knew it was a type of skin cancer, but ignorantly assumed, if you had a funny mole, you had it removed and all was jolly.
Of all the skin cancers, melanoma is the one you don't want to make acquaintance with . It is a nasty, flighty, unpredictable bedfellow that can turn deadly.
Please take a few minutes to read the following facts, as this cancer is serious and is striking more and more people with increasing frequency.
The following is from Miss Melanoma (one of the best sites on this topic on the internet). This was a post done in 2008.
What to Watch For:
A change in size, shape or color. The features of change to watch for in moles are the A, B, C, D and E’s of detection.
Asymmetry — Two halves of a lesion that are not the same
Border — Borders of a lesion are irregular, scalloped or vague
Color — Color varies from one area to another, including shades of tan or brown as well as black, blue, red and white
Diameter — A lesion that is greater than 6 millimeters in diameter, about the size of a pencil eraser
Evolution — Lesions that change or evolve, or is ELEVATED or raised above the skin and has a rough surface
You should also watch for the following skin changes:A mole that bleeds
A fast-growing mole
A scaly or crusted growth on the skin
A sore that won't heal
A mole that itches
A place on your skin that feels rough, like sandpaper
*Skin cancer is the #1 diagnosed cancer, and the third most commonly diagnosed cancer among women 20-39 years of age.
*More than 90% of skin cancer is caused by sun and tanning bed exposure.
*Each hour, one person dies from skin cancer.
*One in 5 people will be diagnosed with it.
*One in 41 men and one in 61 women will develop melanoma in their lifetime.
*The rate of melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, has more than doubled between 1973 and 1996.
*Melanoma is more common than any non-skin cancer among people between 25 and 29 years old.
*An estimated 7,400 deaths from melanoma and 2,200 from other skin cancers were expected in 2002 and more than 7,800 died from melanoma alone.
*The death rate from melanoma for men is almost twice that of women due to late detection *Melanoma is now the fastest growing cancer in the U.S. There have been no significant advances in the medical treatment or survival rate in the last 30 years.
* One blistering sunburn in childhood or adolescence more than doubles a person's chances of developing melanoma later in life.
* Exposure to tanning beds before age 35 increases melanoma risk by 75 percent.
* On an average day, more than one million Americans use tanning salons.
* New high-pressure sunlamps emit doses of UVR that can be as much as 12 times that of the sun.
And for our finale....
*In women 25-29, melanoma is the primary cause of cancer death, and in women 30-34 it is the second most common cause of cancer death.
*In the U.S. your chance of getting melanoma in 1940 was 1 in 1500. By 2004, it was 1 in 67. By 2010, scientists predict it will be 1 in 50.
*The incidence of melanoma has increased 690 percent from 1950 to 2001, and the overall mortality rate increased 165 percent during this same period.
*If caught in the earliest stages, melanoma is entirely treatable with a survival rate of nearly 100%. If untreated and allowed to spread, there is no known treatment or cure.
Being aware could save your life
.........I consider myself pretty well informed about medical issues, however I was totally uninformed about this particular subject as I fear many are. I promise my next post will be back to my normal doll, etc., related topics. This however is too important to