Skin Cancer Facts

Summer is here and more time outside means more risk for skin cancer.  No one is immune! This summer and all year round, protect yourself and spread the word to your friends and family to do the same.

  • Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States. More than 3.5 million cases in two million people are diagnosed annually.37
  • Each year there are more new cases of skin cancer than the combined incidence of cancers of the breast, prostate, lung and colon.3
  • One in five Americans will develop skin cancer in the course of a lifetime.26
  • Women aged 39 and under have a higher probability of developing melanoma than any other cancer except breast cancer.3
  • Melanoma is the most common form of cancer for young adults 25-29 years old and the second most common form of cancer for adolescents and young adults 15-29 years old.18 Not surprisingly, darker-skinned individuals perceive themselves as having low or no risk for melanoma, as much of the public education efforts have targeted the white populations, especially those with blue eyes and blond or red hair. While it is true that their risk is much lower, sun safe practices (such as wearing sunscreen) and annual skin exams should still not be ignored. The fact is, nobody is immune to skin cancer.
  • Darker skin does provide some protection from the sun's UV rays, but don't count on it alone. Skin cancer is less common, but can be more deadly, in those with darker skin. Begin each day by applying a sunscreen or moisturizer with an SPF 15 to 30. And reapply sun protection often while you're in direct sunlight.
  • Protecting your skin and eyes from the sun is the single best way to reduce your risk of skin cancer.