Skin Cancer

Most parents remembered hearing about the importance of protecting their children from the sun, yet children are still playing in the sun without sunscreen or protective clothing. Many people these days are not taking skin cancer seriously after knowing its significance. Skin cancer has been a growing problem in the United States and millions of people have suffered from it every year. The three most common skin cancers are Melanoma, Basal cell, and Squamous cell, which can cause bumps, sores, growths, etc. Skin cancer is a deadly disease with many causes, but the advantage is that it can be prevented.

Problem/Definition Skin cancer is a disease where cancer (malignant) cells are found on the outer layer of the skin (epidermis). The three types of cells found in the epidermis are squamous cells, basal cells, and melanocytes. These cells in time grow to be cancerous. Thus, the three types of skin cancers are squamous cell, basal cell, and melanoma. Melanoma is the most deadliest and destructive type of cancer. (“Skin Cancer” infotrac. com) The number of people with melanoma has risen in Scotland from 3. 5 in 1979 to 10.

6 per 100,000 in 1998 for men and 7. 0 to 13. 1 for women. (Miller 945) Squamous cell and Basal cell skin cancer can kill up to 2,200 people a year in the United States. (Sommerfield SIRS. com) Basal cell, being the most common type of skin cancer, is the cancer that about 75 percent of the people have. (“Skin Cancer ” infotrac. com) Melanoma is mostly seen in older men but ever since tanning came in during the 1970’s, it has increased in women 60 percent around the ages 15-29 over the past three decades. (Sommerfield “.

And basal cell and squamous cell cancers are increasing at a rate of about 5 percent per year”(Sommerfield SIRS. com). Causes Skin Cancer is caused by hereditary factors, overexposure to the sun, and weak immune systems. (“Skin Cancer” infotrac. com).

One reason people tend to get skin cancer is when someone in your family has passed their genes down to you, known as hereditary. Normally hereditary is one of the causes in the development of melanoma. For all types of skin cancers, overexposure of the skin to UV radiation in sunlight is the most frequently blamed source of skin cancer. “Research suggests that sunburns received early in one’s childhood can lead to skin cancer later in life” (“Skin Cancer” infotrac. com).

For example, when someone gets sunburned, you usually don’t know till ten to twenty years after and that’s why people don’t get skin cancer till they reach their twenties. (“Skin Cancer” infotrac. com) Very simply, sunburn and the UV light can damage the skin and lead to skin cancer. (Stiefel 14) Additionally, having a weak immune system may cause one to develop skin cancer. (“Skin Cancer” For example people who have aids might be at the risk of getting skin cancer.

Current Events/ Studies Studies recently done have shown that putting on sunscreen regularly is the most successful way of preventing against skin cancer rather than just putting it on for occasions like the going to the pool or beach. Steven Darlington of Queensland Institute of Medical Research in Australia did a four-year study on the development of actinic keratoses, precancerous sun spots, on the skin of 1,621 volunteers around the ages 25 to 74.

His results showed him that the people who put on sunscreen regularly had 24% fewer pre-cancers than those who put it on just when their going to be outside for a long time. The people who benefited from sunscreen were young with darker skin. (Allen 3) “The study? indicates yet again the great potential value of cutaneous sunscreen application, when undertaken conscientiously and carefully, against the now extremely well documented ravages of sunlight in both the short and long term, wrote Dr. John L. M. Hawk” (Allen 3). Discussion of current events/ Case Study

In order to put this issue in greater clarity, the following case study should be examined. In Australia, a case was done on 3 groups of patients, “those with invasive superficial or nodular melanoma of the trunk, those with similar histological types of melanoma of the head and neck, and those with lentigo maligna melanoma” (Rivers 728). The patients with melanoma of the head and neck had a history of sun damage and freckling on the faces as a teenager. While the patients with lentigo maligna melanoma tend to freckle and develop solar keratoses.

Lastly, patients with melanoma of the trunk are prone to melanocytic naevi (moles) and less exposed to the sun. Melanocytic naevi is densest on the arms and grows according to the equator. (Rivers 728) In other words, sunlight has a major role in the development of naevi. Since getting melanoma has so many risks as a young adult, people need to start taking preventing themselves from getting skin cancer. Current Event/ Expert Opinion Learning what experts have to say about skin cancer will help us understand why preventing your self from skin cancer is very important.

Jeffrey S. Dover M. D. is known for being a dermatologist in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts, and a member of the board of the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery. He believes that now days most people are getting skin cancer in their 20’s which is earlier than it use to be because of so many people staying out in the sun too long. (Smith 214) This shows us that year by year the age of getting skin cancer is decreasing because people are not taking things seriously but rather putting it off like its not important. George J. Hruza, M. D, a dermatologist in St.

Louis Missouri and a board member of the American College of Mohs Micrographic Surgery believes that if people want they can prevent themselves from getting skin cancer by taking precautions. (Smith 214) He also says that, “When men have melanomas, they are often on the back, and among women, melanomas more typically develop on the legs” (Smith 214). “Anyone who is at risk for skin cancer, especially people with fair skin, light hair, and blue-green eyes, but even those living in northern regions where the sun isn’t strong, should make sunscreen use a routine, says Dr.

Davis J. Leffell, a Yale University dermatologist”(Allen 3). (I need a ending sentence) Solutions There are many solutions to preventing skin cancer. For example, people purposefully go to the beach to get a tan. Instead you should avoid being out in the sun as much as possible. (Smith 214) A sun tan might give you a glow but in the long run is very harmful. Another example, would be actually wearing sunscreen when you know your going to be outdoors. This way you can enjoy the hot weather, have fun, and be safe too.

(Smith 214) All you have to do is when buying sunscreen, make sure to read the label and check if it has an SPF of 30. Another big problem that you should avoid is tanning beds. (Smith 214) Tanning beds might give you a quick and easy tan with great color to your body but looking at the big picture it could put higher risk for skin cancer and cause your skin to wrinkle. (can u think of an ending sentence) Conclusion Before all this scary information causes you to sprint to your room, close the curtains, and hide underneath your bed, there is always good news.

Experts on skin cancer say it is easy to protect yourself from the sun and reduce the risk of skin cancer. All you have to do is start applying the precautions at an early age in life and your set to go for the future. The vast majority of skin cancer is a result of individuals spending more time, in skimpier clothing, under the skin-damaging sun. The risks are very significant and individuals need to weigh that up when you are at the beach or at a tanning salon.

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