Facts About Skin Cancer

Facts about skin cancer

Picture of elderly couple walking on the beach

Skin cancer is a malignant tumor that grows in the skin cells. According to the latest statistics available from the American Cancer Society (ACS):

  • In the US alone, more than 2 million Americans will be diagnosd with nonmelanoma skin cancer each year.
  • In 2010, 68,130 people were expected to be diagnosed with melanoma.
  • Although exposure to the sun's ultraviolet (UV) rays is said to be the most important factor in the cause of skin cancers, the majority of American adults do not use sun-protection measures.
  • Most skin cancers appear in older people, but skin damage from the sun begins at an early age. Therefore, protection should start in childhood to prevent skin cancer later in life.
  • Basal cell carcinoma is the most common form of cancer worldwide.
  • Melanoma incidence rates are 10 times higher for Caucasians than for African-Americans. People with dark-pigmented skin can develop melanoma, particularly on the palms of the hands, on the soles of the feet, under the nails, and inside the mouth.

Learn More About Sharp
Sharp HealthCare is San Diego's health care leader with seven hospitals, two medical groups and a health plan. Learn more about our San Diego hospitals, choose a Sharp-affiliated San Diego doctor or browse our comprehensive medical services.