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Skin Cancer

photograph from Health & Safety story

(before 2003)

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In California about 9,000 people will die this year because of skin cancer.

There are two types of skin cancer. One type is caused by the sun. The second type of skin cancer happens when the skin cells are turned into cancer cells.

Your risk for getting skin cancer depends on a number of things. Your chances are higher if you have light-colored skin, have blue eyes, are getting older, or are in the sun a lot.

The survival rate for skin cancer is 80% when found and treated early. Depending on how deep the skin tumors are, different therapies can be tried. They are surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation.

Skin cancer can be prevented by staying out of the sun during the hottest part of the day. Using sun block with a protective factor of at least 15 will also help. Other ways of protecting yourself would be to wear hats and long-sleeve shirts. It is also good to look at your skin each month to find any skin cancers early.

Watching for any changes in your skin and staying out of the sun during peak hours are the two best ways to prevent skin cancer.

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