1 in 20 Melanoma Cases Due to Tanning Bed UseJuly 25th, 2012 | Posted by in Prevention | Skin Cancer | Tanning | Teen
A new study indicates that the one in 20 cases of melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, can be traced back to tanning bed use. The research also indicates that those who bronze regularly in a tanning bed face a 20% higher risk of developing skin cancer and if they begin fake tanning before the age of 35 the risk jumps to 87%.
The study’s head researcher, Philippe Autier, who also serves as director of the International Prevention Research Institute in Lyon, France offers a stern admonishment: “Indoor UV tanning devices are real carcinogenic devices, and people should be advised not to attend indoor tanning parlors or to buy them for private use.”
For this reason, the usage of tanning beds has been made illegal in Brazil and New South Wales and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is considering a ban as well for anyone under the age of 18. Autier said that the movement against indoor tanning is also gaining momentum in France.
Study co-author Mathieu Boniol, who is also from the International Prevention Research Institute, added that “as the use of these devices produces no positive effect to health, it is now in the hands of policy makers to decide how to manage, minimize or remove this risk.”
According to the researchers, since the use of tanning beds is relatively new and there is need for more research, unfortunately the risk might be even greater.
Dr. Jeffrey C. Salomon, an assistant clinical professor of plastic surgery at Yale University School of Medicine, said that “this study validates the previous studies and adds new risks to the ever growing knowledge of the downside of tanning beds.”
Parents should not only be concerned about their children using tanning beds, they should avoid using these devices themselves, he said.
Salomon said, “Tanning beds are worse than the sun for risk of melanoma based on these results. The risks from tanning beds are real, the untoward results can be dire, and the ultimate solution may require total prohibition.”