Free Skin Cancer Screenings: May 13, 8:30-11:00am at University Health Services-University Health Services - Carnegie Mellon University

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Free Skin Cancer Screenings: May 13, 8:30-11:00am at University Health Services

Students, faculty and staff can schedule appointments by calling 412-268-2157 (option 2).

Did you know that skin cancer is the most common cancer in the U.S.?  Each year in the U.S., more than 2 million people are diagnosed with skin cancer.  There are many steps people can take to prevent skin cancer or to catch it early so it can be treated effectively.  Most skin cancers are caused by too much exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays, including from the sun and tanning beds.  Check out the Skin Cancer Foundation's list of common myths about sun exposure, tanning, and Vitamin D, and learn the facts.

What is screening?  Screening is looking for cancer before a person has any symptoms.  Screening can help find cancer at an early stage, making it easier to treat.  Regular examination of the skin by both you and your doctor can help find some cancers early.

It's important to take these precautions against UV exposure every day of the year:

  • Seek shade if outdoors, especially when the sun's UV rays are strongest (10am - 4pm)
  • Wear a wide-brimmed hat and cover up with clothing to protect exposed skin
  • Wear sunglasses that protect against UVA and UVB rays
  • Apply sunscreen (at least SPF 15) 30 minutes before going outdoors and frequently during the day
  • Avoid tanning beds and sunlamps

Although anyone can be affected by UV exposure, people with certain risk factors are more likely to develop skin cancer:

  • A lighter skin color
  • Family history and/or personal history of skin cancer
  • Exposure to the sun through work and play
  • A history of sunburns early in life
  • A history of indoor tanning
  • Skin that burns, freckles, reddens easily, or becomes painful in the sun
  • Blue or green eyes
  • Blond or red hair
  • Certain types and a large number of moles
Visit the American Cancer Society's Skin Cancer Prevention and Early Detection Guide for more information.