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HHS HealthBeat (April 6, 2011)

A bad rich tan

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

A study indicates one thing money can buy could be something nobody wants – a higher risk of the deadly skin cancer melanoma. At the Cancer Prevention Institute of California, Dr. Christina Clarke examined data on melanoma among women and girls ages 15 through 39. She looked at neighborhood wealth, and whether the neighborhoods got more sunshine:

``Wealthier neighborhoods had much higher risk than poorer neighborhoods, and the sun was really only increasing the risk a little bit, in the wealthier neighborhoods only.’’ (9 seconds)

Sun exposure raises the risk of skin cancer. Clarke thinks girls and women in the wealthier neighborhoods could afford things like vacations in the sun.

Data for 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