Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Older Australians at risk of sun-related skin cancer death

15.04.2008
A new Western Australian study has revealed the mortality from non-melanoma skin cancer (NMSC), commonly considered less dangerous than melanoma, is affecting older Australians at a worrying rate.

Researchers at the Western Australian Institute for Medical Research (WAIMR) found West Australians above the age of 69, especially men, accounted for 70 percent of deaths from non-melanoma skin cancer in WA, and most primary cancers occured in areas of high sun exposure.

The study has prompted health experts to urge older people to stay vigilant about sun protection and get regular skin checks.

The Cancer Council WA Director of Education and Research and co-author of the paper, Terry Slevin, said the study’s results should act as a strong reminder for older West Australians to check their skin and see their doctor at the first sign of anything suspicious.

“Older people may have become blasé about NMSC because for the most part they can just be cut out, but as this research shows, NMSC is serious and can be deadly if left untreated,” he said.

“It’s important people understand that NMSCs are preventable from middle age – it’s wrong to think all the damage to our skin is done in childhood and nothing can be done after that to avoid skin cancer.”

The research published in the most recent edition of Cancer Causes Control, found 70 percent of deaths from NMSC occurred among people aged 70 years and over. More than 70 per cent of those were men, and in most cases the primary cancer developed on the face, ears, hands or scalp.

“These results should be a stark reminder for older people, especially blokes, that they should be more vigilant in having their skin checked and do something if they notice any changes in their skin,” Mr Slevin said.

“The message these findings send us is that it’s never too late to prevent skin cancer and regular skin checks are important to catch skin cancers early, before they become a problem.”

Each year in Western Australia, it's estimated that around 30,000 non-melanoma skin cancers are removed and there are 37 deaths from these types of cancers.

Author of the paper, WAIMR Associate Professor Lin Fritschi, said the research was the first definitive evidence that deaths from NMSC in Australia was primarily caused by cancer resulting from excessive sun exposure.

“The average age of death caused by NMSC was about 77 years old, and most primary cancers appeared in areas of high sun exposure – for men, the scalp was the primary cancer site in a quarter of these deadly cancer cases,” she said.

“These cancers can mostly be prevented by applying the ‘slip, slop, slap’ rule and early detection.

“There could be a number of reasons why older people are not picking up these cancers early enough such as poor eyesight and less mobility to check their own skin, illness or dementia.

“In light of these findings, skin cancer examinations really need to become a high priority for older people as well as their GPs, nurses and carers.”

The research found no deaths recorded from basal cell carcinoma (BCC), one of the most common NMSCs, or solar keratosis. Most deaths were associated with squamous cell carcinoma and Merkel cell carcinoma.

Sarah Hayward | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.researchaustralia.com.au

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Researchers simplify tiny structures' construction drip by drip
12.11.2018 | Princeton University, Engineering School

nachricht Mandibular movement monitoring may help improve oral sleep apnea devices
06.11.2018 | Elsevier

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: First diode for magnetic fields

Innsbruck quantum physicists have constructed a diode for magnetic fields and then tested it in the laboratory. The device, developed by the research groups led by the theorist Oriol Romero-Isart and the experimental physicist Gerhard Kirchmair, could open up a number of new applications.

Electric diodes are essential electronic components that conduct electricity in one direction but prevent conduction in the opposite one. They are found at the...

Im Focus: Nonstop Tranport of Cargo in Nanomachines

Max Planck researchers revel the nano-structure of molecular trains and the reason for smooth transport in cellular antennas.

Moving around, sensing the extracellular environment, and signaling to other cells are important for a cell to function properly. Responsible for those tasks...

Im Focus: UNH scientists help provide first-ever views of elusive energy explosion

Researchers at the University of New Hampshire have captured a difficult-to-view singular event involving "magnetic reconnection"--the process by which sparse particles and energy around Earth collide producing a quick but mighty explosion--in the Earth's magnetotail, the magnetic environment that trails behind the planet.

Magnetic reconnection has remained a bit of a mystery to scientists. They know it exists and have documented the effects that the energy explosions can...

Im Focus: A Chip with Blood Vessels

Biochips have been developed at TU Wien (Vienna), on which tissue can be produced and examined. This allows supplying the tissue with different substances in a very controlled way.

Cultivating human cells in the Petri dish is not a big challenge today. Producing artificial tissue, however, permeated by fine blood vessels, is a much more...

Im Focus: A Leap Into Quantum Technology

Faster and secure data communication: This is the goal of a new joint project involving physicists from the University of Würzburg. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research funds the project with 14.8 million euro.

In our digital world data security and secure communication are becoming more and more important. Quantum communication is a promising approach to achieve...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Optical Coherence Tomography: German-Japanese Research Alliance hosted Medical Imaging Conference

19.11.2018 | Event News

“3rd Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP 2018” Attracts International Experts and Users

09.11.2018 | Event News

On the brain’s ability to find the right direction

06.11.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

New Insight into Molecular Processes

22.11.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

Crowdsourced field data shows importance of smallholder farms to global food production

22.11.2018 | Agricultural and Forestry Science

Helping to Transport Proteins Inside the Cell

21.11.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>