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HHS HealthBeat (January 20, 2011)

Odds on indoor tanning

Glowing tanning bed
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From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, I’m Ira Dreyfuss with HHS HealthBeat.

In winter, some people who can’t escape to lie on tropical beaches are lying in indoor tanning beds. They think they’ll look better, but doctors say they could get skin cancer.

At the University of Minnesota in balmy Minneapolis, researcher Kelvin Choi has been examining national survey data on close to 2,900 people who were white and 18 years old or more. He says young adults led in use of indoor tanning:

``About 36 percent of women and 12 percent of men between the ages of 18 to 24 reported tanning indoors in the past year.’’ (7 seconds)

Indoor tanning is a known risk factor for cancer, including melanoma, the form most likely to kill unless it’s caught early.

The study in Archives of Dermatology was supported by the National Institutes of Health.

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HHS HealthBeat is a production of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. I’m Ira Dreyfuss.

Last revised: May 7, 2011