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Related terms: Cancer, Melanoma, Malignant Melanoma, Skin Cancer, Melanoma

Woman's Selfie of Skin Cancer Went Viral, Sparked Awareness

Posted 19 minutes ago by

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 13, 2017 – You don't have to be famous for your public health message to reach millions. A new case study describes how Tawny Dzierzek, a young nurse from Kentucky, posted a startling selfie on social media in April 2015, shortly after she had a skin cancer treatment. Dzierzek was a regular user of tanning beds in her youth. She was diagnosed with skin cancer at age 21. By the time she was 27, she'd had basal cell skin cancer five times, and squamous cell skin cancer once. Her selfie was shared 50,000 times on social media in less than a month, and her story received widespread media attention. Google searches about skin cancer climbed to near-record levels when news coverage about Dzierzek's selfie was at its peak, according to the case study published Dec. 13 in the journal Preventive Medicine. Online searches about skin cancer and tanning were as much as 489 percent ... Read more

Related support groups: Basal Cell Carcinoma, Sunburn, Skin Cancer, Melanoma, Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Prevention of Sunburn, History - Skin Cancer

Insurance Ups the Odds of Beating Cancer

Posted 8 days ago by

TUESDAY, Dec. 5, 2017 – Your chances of surviving cancer may depend on the type of insurance you have. Researchers from the Cancer Prevention Institute of California found significant improvements in survival among cancer patients with private insurance or Medicare, but not among those who have public insurance such as Medicaid, or are uninsured. The investigators analyzed data on more than 1.1 million patients in California diagnosed with the five most common types cancer in the state – breast, colon, lung, melanoma and prostate – between 1997 and 2014. Compared with people who had private insurance, those who had no insurance had a much higher death rate for all cancers except prostate. Those with Medicaid had a much higher death rate for all cancer types except lung cancer, the researchers found. Also, they found that Medicaid patients had higher survival rates than uninsured ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Breast Cancer, Prostate Cancer, Lung Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Melanoma

How to Do a Skin Cancer Body Check

Posted 15 Nov 2017 by

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 15, 2017 – Every year, about 5 million Americans are treated for skin cancer – an abnormal growth of skin cells that most often develops on areas exposed to the sun. You can spot early signs by regularly checking your skin for changes. Everyone is susceptible to skin cancer. However, people who have light skin that burns easily, red hair, and/or blue eyes have a higher risk. Three types of skin cancer account for nearly all cases: basal cell and squamous cell carcinomas and, the most dangerous, melanoma. Follow the A-B-C-D-E method to help you know when a growth needs to be evaluated by your doctor. Here's what to look for when evaluating skin growths: Asymmetry: The two halves of the growth don't match. Border: The edges are irregular or poorly defined. Color: You see various shades of tan, brown, black or even white, red or blue. Diameter: Melanomas are often the ... Read more

Related support groups: Basal Cell Carcinoma, Skin Cancer, Melanoma, Melanoma - Metastatic, Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Diagnosis and Investigation, Merkel Cell Carcinoma, History - Skin Cancer

Some Guys Can't Stay Away From Tanning Beds

Posted 8 Nov 2017 by

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 8, 2017 – Indoor tanning appears to be more addictive for men than women, even though they use tanning beds less than females, a new study finds. The stereotypical tanning salon client is a young woman, so they are the focus of most research and health warnings about tanning. But the authors behind the new study concluded that anti-tanning efforts should also target men. The findings were "really surprising," said study author Sherry Pagoto, director of the University of Connecticut Center for mHealth and Social Media. "If they tan with the same frequency as women, why would tanning in men be more addictive?" The researchers surveyed more than 600 tanning bed users across the United States. One-third were male. Compared to women, men were more likely to say they felt anxious if they weren't able to tan, that they tanned to relieve stress and that they spent money on ... Read more

Related support groups: Basal Cell Carcinoma, Sunburn, Skin Cancer, Melanoma, Melanoma - Metastatic, Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Prevention of Sunburn

Waiting Even a Month to Remove Melanoma Can Be Deadly

Posted 7 Nov 2017 by

TUESDAY, Nov. 7, 2017 – The sooner the deadly skin cancer melanoma is treated, the more likely a patient is to survive. Researchers analyzed data from more than 153,000 American adults diagnosed with stage 1 to 3 melanoma between 2004 and 2012. No matter what stage their cancer was, those who waited more than 90 days for surgical treatment were more likely to die. And postponing surgery for more than 29 days led to lower survival rates for patients with stage 1 melanoma, though not for those with stage 2 or 3. Compared to patients who were treated within 30 days, patients with stage 1 melanoma were 5 percent more likely to die when treated between 30 and 59 days. Their risk of death rose 16 percent when treated between 60 and 89 days; 29 percent when treated between 91 and 120 days; and 41 percent when treated after 120 days. Patients who put off their treatment tended to be older men ... Read more

Related support groups: Basal Cell Carcinoma, Skin Cancer, Melanoma, Melanoma - Metastatic, Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Merkel Cell Carcinoma, History - Skin Cancer

Patients' Gut Bugs May Play Role in Cancer Care

Posted 3 Nov 2017 by

THURSDAY, Nov. 2, 2017 – The type of bacteria that cancer patients harbor in the gut might affect their odds of responding to certain treatments, two early studies hint. The research, in humans and mice, adds to evidence that gut bacteria play a key role in the immune system. But experts stressed it's too soon to make recommendations to cancer patients – including whether they should take "probiotic" supplements. Both studies looked at whether there's a link between patients' gut bacteria and their responses to newer cancer drugs called PD-1 inhibitors. The drugs, which include Keytruda (pembrolizumab) and Opdivo (nivolumab), work by freeing up the immune system to attack cancer cells. The drugs are approved for several cancers, including advanced cases of melanoma, lung, bladder and stomach cancers. In one study, researchers focused on 112 patients with advanced melanoma, the ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Lung Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Melanoma, Opdivo, Keytruda, Bladder Cancer, Nivolumab, Pembrolizumab, Gastrinoma

Speed Up the 'Cancer Moonshot,' Doctors Urge

Posted 1 Nov 2017 by

TUESDAY, Oct. 31, 2017 – The Cancer Moonshot Initiative now has a detailed road map designed to cram a decade's worth of medical advancement into half that time. A new report, authored by more than 50 leading U.S. cancer doctors, highlights 13 priority areas for improving the medical response to cancer, along with measurable goals and a specific timeline for meeting each of those objectives. The plan is intended to help "accelerate existing progress so that we deliver in five years what would have historically taken 10," said Dr. Cliff Hudis, chief executive officer of the American Society of Clinical Oncology and co-author of the report. It was created by The Lancet Oncology Commission on Future Research Priorities in the USA. In late 2016, Congress appropriated $1.8 billion for cancer research funding over the next seven years for the so-called Cancer Moonshot, said commission ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Methotrexate, Breast Cancer, Prostate Cancer, Fluorouracil, Gleevec, Lung Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Melanoma, Xeloda, Tasigna, Sprycel, Hydroxyurea, Herceptin, Cervical Cancer, Mercaptopurine, Hydrea, Cisplatin, Carboplatin

Health Tip: Avoid UV Radiation

Posted 31 Oct 2017 by

-- Ultraviolet (UV) radiation coming from the sun is a major cause of skin cancer. The American Cancer Society suggests how to minimize the effects of UV rays: UV rays are strongest between the hours of 10 am and 4 pm. If you must be outside during this time, stay in the shade as much as possible. Always wear sunscreen when you're outside. Cover most parts of your skin with clothing. Wear a hat to protect your head, neck and face. Wear sunglasses that are designed to block UV rays. Read more

Related support groups: Basal Cell Carcinoma, Sunburn, Skin Cancer, Melanoma, Sunscreen, Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Melanoma - Metastatic, Prevention of Sunburn, History - Skin Cancer, Deeptan, Coppertone

Almost 4 in 10 Tanning Salons Flout State Laws

Posted 25 Oct 2017 by

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 25, 2017 – Nearly 40 percent of indoor tanning facilities ignore state laws that curb teen tanning, a new survey finds. To protect teens, most states have laws that prevent or create obstacles to using tanning salons, but nearly 2 million high school kids still get indoor tans, said the researchers who conducted the survey. "The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has classified tanning beds as cancer causing," said the survey's lead researcher, Dr. Erik Stratman, a dermatologist at the Marshfield Clinic in Marshfield, Wis. Indoor tanning is particularly dangerous for young people, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, because it increases their risk for melanoma, a deadly form of skin cancer. Banning indoor tanning for teens might prevent thousands of melanomas and melanoma deaths and the millions spent on treatment, Stratman said. "While no ... Read more

Related support groups: Basal Cell Carcinoma, Sunburn, Skin Cancer, Melanoma, Sunscreen, Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Melanoma - Metastatic, Prevention of Sunburn, History - Skin Cancer, Merkel Cell Carcinoma, Deeptan, Coppertone

1 in 5 Young Women Who Tan Indoors Get Addicted

Posted 19 Oct 2017 by

THURSDAY, Oct. 19, 2017 – More than 20 percent of young white women who've been to a tanning salon become addicted to tanning – even though doing so raises their risk of deadly skin cancer and premature skin aging, a new study reports. These women seem to depend on tanning to feel attractive and often show symptoms of depression, the researchers said. "Indoor tanning remains a public health concern for skin cancer prevention," said lead researcher Darren Mays, an assistant professor of oncology at Georgetown University Medical Center in Washington, D.C. "Our study indicates a substantial proportion of young women who indoor tan may become dependent, putting this group at especially high risk for skin cancer later in life," he said. Indoor tanning is dangerous. It increases the risk of melanoma, the most deadly cancer, by 20 percent and increases the risk of other skin cancers as well, ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Basal Cell Carcinoma, Sunburn, Skin Cancer, Melanoma, Sunscreen, Squamous Cell Carcinoma, History - Skin Cancer, Deeptan, Coppertone

With Skin Cancer Surgery, Insurance Matters

Posted 16 Oct 2017 by

MONDAY, Oct. 16, 2017 – Surgery is the main treatment for melanoma – a dangerous form of skin cancer – but a patient's insurance could affect whether or not that cancer is quickly removed, new research suggests. After reviewing thousands of melanoma cases, researchers at the University of North Carolina Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center reported that patients with Medicaid were more likely to face delays in scheduling their surgery than those with private insurance. Medicaid is the federally funded health insurance program for poor and needy people. "The primary treatment for most melanoma is surgical excision, which can be curative," said study author Dr. Ade Adamson, a clinical instructor in the UNC School of Medicine's department of dermatology. "These delays in care are concerning, particularly if they disproportionately affect those who might be the most vulnerable, such as ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Skin Cancer, Melanoma, Melanoma - Metastatic, Surgical Prophylaxis, History - Skin Cancer

Scientists Spot Genes Behind Skin Color

Posted 12 Oct 2017 by

THURSDAY, Oct. 12, 2017 – Humans come in a range of colors, and new research is getting a step closer to how that happens. Newly identified gene variants tied to skin colors among Africans could offer insights into human evolution. The findings could also boost scientists' understanding of skin cancer and other conditions, researchers say. "We have identified new genetic variants that contribute to the genetic basis of one of the most strikingly variable traits in modern humans," said study senior author Sarah Tishkoff. She's professor of genetics and biology at the University of Pennsylvania. Until now, only a few genes linked with normal variation in skin color have been pinpointed. Most of them have been found in studies of Europeans. In this study, researchers assessed skin pigmentation and genetic data from nearly 1,600 ethnically and genetically diverse people in Africa. "When ... Read more

Related support groups: Skin Cancer, Melanoma, Diagnosis and Investigation, History - Skin Cancer

Start Skin Cancer Prevention Early, Health Experts Say

Posted 10 Oct 2017 by

TUESDAY, Oct. 10, 2017 – How to keep from developing skin cancer should be something all doctors discuss with the parents of their young, fair-skinned patients, suggests the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. Those conversations should begin much earlier than previously recommended – starting when a child is just 6 months old, according to new recommendations from the task force. "Providing behavioral counseling to children, their parents and young adults encourages sun-protective behaviors," said Karina Davidson, a U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) member. "These actions – such as using sunscreen, wearing sun-protective clothing and avoiding indoor tanning – can help prevent skin cancer later in life," Davidson explained in a USPSTF news release. She is vice dean at Columbia University Medical Center's departments of medicine, cardiology and psychiatry and director of ... Read more

Related support groups: Basal Cell Carcinoma, Sunburn, Skin Cancer, Melanoma, Sunscreen, Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Melanoma - Metastatic, Prevention of Sunburn, History - Skin Cancer, Merkel Cell Carcinoma, Deeptan, Coppertone

Does Healthy Skin Around Suspicious Moles Need Removal?

Posted 2 Oct 2017 by

MONDAY, Oct. 2, 2017 – If you're having a suspicious mole removed, the doctor should consider removing about 2 millimeters of healthy skin from around the mole. Doing so could avoid the need for a second surgery if the mole turns out to be cancerous, according to a new report. In the study, researchers removed about 150 suspicious moles from nearly 140 men and women. All of them had at least 2 millimeters (mm) of skin removed around the outside edges of the moles. Doctors call that healthy skin from around the mole "the margin." "Although the vast majority of suspicious-looking skin moles do not turn out to be cancerous melanomas, once a decision has been made to remove a mole, there should be a clearer standard margin," said senior study investigator Dr. David Polsky. He is a dermatologist and professor of dermatologic oncology at NYU Langone Health in New York City. Polsky noted that ... Read more

Related support groups: Basal Cell Carcinoma, Skin Cancer, Melanoma, Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Melanoma - Metastatic, Diagnosis and Investigation, Surgical Prophylaxis, Merkel Cell Carcinoma, History - Skin Cancer

Blacks, Elderly Missing From U.S. Cancer Clinical Trials

Posted 26 Sep 2017 by

MONDAY, Sept. 25, 2017 – Four out of five participants in cancer clinical trials are white, a discrepancy that calls into question whether other races and ethnicities are receiving good cancer treatment, researchers say. Women and the elderly also are underrepresented in clinical trials, according to the new findings. Prior studies have shown that the effectiveness of cancer treatment can vary based on a person's race, gender and age, said lead researcher Dr. Narjust Duma. Despite this, clinical trials have failed to successfully recruit a diverse patient population upon whom to test new drugs and therapies, said Duma, a hematology/oncology fellow at the Mayo Clinic, in Rochester, Minn. "All the data we're using to guide cancer treatment is for one type of patient," she said. Duma undertook this study after a conversation with a black lung cancer patient about possible chemotherapy ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Breast Cancer, Lung Cancer, Melanoma, Diagnosis and Investigation

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