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Monday, May 6th is National Melanoma Monday!

May 2, 2002 -- While we won't be celebrating National Melanoma Monday quite like we do Valentine's Day or Fourth of July, Monday, May 6 has been set aside to raise awareness of Melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer.

Did you know that:

  • One in seven Americans will develop skin cancer in their lifetime.

  • This number is growing by 4 percent per year.

  • One in every three new cancers is skin cancer.

  • It is estimated that 60,000 new cases will be diagnosed and 7,400 Americans will die from Malignant Melanoma in 2002.

  • One serious childhood or adolescent sunburn doubles the chances of developing skin cancer, especially melanoma.

  • 75 percent of all skin cancer deaths are from malignant melanoma.

  • Through prevention and early detection, skin cancer can be avoided!

National Self-Examination Day encourages Americans to begin a lifelong habit of regular skin self-examinations. If there are any changes in the size, color, shape or texture of a mole, the development of a new mole, or any other unusual changes in the skin, you should see your dermatologist immediately.

"Your chances of getting skin cancer are one in seven," states Dr. Shannon Lamb. "Many people think of it as a disease of the elderly but we are seeing more and more incidence of skin cancer in younger people because their sun tanning habits are particularly unhealthy. They shouldn't think of themselves as immune to skin cancer," she added. "Since it takes an accumulation of 10 to 20 years of sun exposure to cause the disease, they are at risk right now."

Don't put off having a healthcare professional check out those Îbeauty marks' or moles caused by the sun. My name is Robin Lawrence-Broesch, Director of Marketing for the Evansville Cancer Center. I was recently diagnosed with Malignant Melanoma. Because of early detection and proper medical treatment, my prognosis is good! Please, this summer, practice Sun Safety. Your life is worth it!

Did you know that dermatololists have found with regular use of sunscreens with an SPF of 15 during the first 18 years of life can reduce the lifetime incidence of skin cancer by as much as 78 percent.

Information Source: American Cancer Society, 1-800-ACS-2345 or (812) 424-8281

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