Other research linking intense, intermittent sun exposure with basal cell carcinoma and melanoma together strongly reinforce the case against tanning.
A Lifetime of Cancer Risk
People who are diagnosed with nonmelanoma skin cancer (NMSC) have an increased risk for subsequently developing melanoma and 29 other cancer types.
That risk increases substantially for people diagnosed with NMSC before the age of 25. This is a finding in a new study published in the March 2014 issue of Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research.
NMSC is the most common type of skin cancer. It is relatively easy to treat if detected early, and rarely spreads to other organs.
However, Dr. Rodney Sinclair, director of dermatology at the Epworth Hospital and professor of medicine at the University of Melbourne in Australia, found that NMSC tumors increase the risk for “a large group of seemingly unrelated cancers; the greatest risk relates to other cancers induced by sunlight, such as melanoma&hellip and the risk is especially high among people who develop MNSC at a young age.”
The researchers used data from 502,490 people with a history of NMSC, and more than 8.7 million people who served as controls. They followed those people for five to six years.
Compared with people without NMSC, those who had NMSC were 1.36 times more likely to subsequently develop any cancer, including melanoma and salivary gland, bone, and upper gastrointestinal cancers.
Survivors younger than 25 years of age, however, were 23 times more likely to develop any cancer other than NMSC. In particular, they were 94 and 93 times more likely to get melanoma and salivary gland cancer, respectively, the study showed.
They found that for people who had NMSC, the relative risk for developing cancers of the bladder, brain, breast, colon, liver, lung, pancreas, prostate and stomach remained consistently elevated for the entire period of the study, and the risk for cancers of the brain, colon, and prostate increased with time.